Jul. 5, 1997

Moose in the Morning, Northern Maine

by Mona Van Duyn


Today's Reading:"Moose in the Morning, Northern Maine" by Mona Van Duyn from IF IT BE NOT I, published by Random House.

The 71st annual National Cherry Festival begins today in Traverse City, Michigan.

It was on this day in 1945 that British Prime Minister Winston Churchill was defeated in the general election; his Tory party swept from power by the Labour Party under Clement Attlee.

It's the birthday of French novelist, playwright, artist, and actor Jean Cocteau, born in Maisons-Laffitte, France, in 1889.

Astronomer and archaeologist Andrew Ellicott Douglass, who established the principles of dendrochronology (the analysis of tree rings to date and interpret events of the past), was born on this day in Windsor, Vermont, in 1867.

It's the birthday of showman P.T. Barnum, born in Bethel, Connecticut, in 1810.

U.S. admiral David Farragut, remembered for his famous words "Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead!" during the Civil War capture of Mobile Bay, was born on this day in Campbell's Station, Tennessee, 1801.

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
  • “Writing is like getting married. One should never commit oneself until one is amazed at one's luck.” —Iris Murdoch
  • “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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