Then the fish came alive, with his death in him, and rose high out of the water showing all his great length and width and all his power and his beauty. He seemed to hang in the air above the old man in the skiff. Then he fell into the water with a crash that sent spray over the old man and over all the skiff. - The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway
Ernest Hemingway (1899-1961), author of The Sun Also Rises (1926), A Farewell to Arms (1929), For Whom the Bell Tolls (1940), The Old Man and the Sea (1952) and numerous short stories is known for his straightforward and sparse writing style. He won The Nobel Prize in Literature in 1954 “for his mastery of the art of narrative, most recently demonstrated in The Old Man and the Sea, and for the influence that he has exerted on contemporary style".
Hemingway believed creative writers make something that appears real not by describing and copying but rather drawing on their experiences to create something that never existed before. This creation must be artistically honest and give the illusion of real-life. Hemingway says it must come “from his head, from his heart, from all there is of him.” It must be in the limits of what could possibly happen. It must be convincing enough that the reader can, “ see the world clearly and see it whole.” The writer’s task is “to project the truth in such a way that it becomes a part of the experience of the person who reads it.”
Tips from Hemingway
· Write down observations of action so they become ingrained in the memory to be called upon when needed
· Write first draft in longhand
· Edit all items not absolutely necessary to tell the whole story
· Write a few 100 words a day
· Write slowly like laying one brick at a time
Hemingway on Writing Robert C. Hart p315-320
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