Tuesday, September 25, 2007
Books and Books: Twenty-five Years of Hope
Writers survive on hope. And as a writer of literary fiction, many aspects of my vocation such as the capricious whims of publishers are beyond my control. The only certainty is to continue writing "true sentences" as Hemingway advised. Yet, over the years another constant has emerged in my life.
So, after I've finished writing and editing, and fold my manuscript into a manila folder with a prayer, there is always one comforting thought. I know that if that the manuscript is published, somewhere in the future, cocooned by walls of books, stacks of chairs, and a small podium with bottled water and a microphone, Mitchell will be standing in the back of the room and applauding--cheering me on as he has done for the past twenty-five years.
But he hasn't just done this for me. He's championed nearly every known and not so known author who has breezed through this port city or decided to fold her sails and live here. For in the bustle of this fast moving city of garish dialects and mushrooming skyscrapers, Mitchell has created a place where writers feel at home--a space where hope can thrive.