Apr. 27, 1997

Aunt Magana

by Madelyne Camrud


Today's Reading:"Aunt Magana" by Madelyn Camrud from THIS HOUSE IS FILLED WITH CRACKS, published by New Rivers Press.

It's the birthday today of poet Cecil Day-Lewis, the father of actor Daniel Day Lewis, born in Ballintogher, County Sligo, Ireland, in 1904.

It's the anniversary of America's worst steamship disaster in 1865, when the Sultana exploded on the Mississippi River, just north of Memphis. It was heavily overloaded with about 2,300 passengers, most of whom were Union soldiers returning home after being held as prisoners of war.

It's the birthday of Ulysses S. Grant, commander-in-chief of the Union armies during the late years of the Civil War and also 18th president. He was born in Point Pleasant, Ohio, in 1822.

It's the birthday of British historian Edward Gibbon, author of the epic six volume THE HISTORY OF THE DECLINE AND FALL OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE, born in Putney-on-Thames, England in 1737.

Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.®




  • “Writers end up writing stories—or rather, stories' shadows—and they're grateful if they can, but it is not enough. Nothing the writer can do is ever enough” —Joy Williams
  • “I want to live other lives. I've never quite believed that one chance is all I get. Writing is my way of making other chances.” —Anne Tyler
  • “Writing is a performance, like singing an aria or dancing a jig” —Stephen Greenblatt
  • “All good writing is swimming under water and holding your breath.” —F. Scott Fitzgerald
  • “Good writing is always about things that are important to you, things that are scary to you, things that eat you up.” —John Edgar Wideman
  • “In certain ways writing is a form of prayer.” —Denise Levertov
  • “Writing is a socially acceptable form of schizophrenia.” —E.L. Doctorow
  • “Writing is like driving at night in the fog. You can only see as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.” —E.L. Doctorow
  • “Let's face it, writing is hell.” —William Styron
  • “A writer is someone for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people.” —Thomas Mann
  • “Writing is 90 percent procrastination: reading magazines, eating cereal out of the box, watching infomercials.” —Paul Rudnick
  • “Writing is a failure. Writing is not only useless, it's spoiled paper.” —Padget Powell
  • “Writing is very hard work and knowing what you're doing the whole time.” —Shelby Foote
  • “I think all writing is a disease. You can't stop it.” —William Carlos Williams
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  • “The less conscious one is of being ‘a writer,’ the better the writing.” —Pico Iyer
  • “Writing is…that oddest of anomalies: an intimate letter to a stranger.” —Pico Iyer
  • “Writing is my dharma.” —Raja Rao
  • “Writing is a combination of intangible creative fantasy and appallingly hard work.” —Anthony Powell
  • “I think writing is, by definition, an optimistic act.” —Michael Cunningham
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