How Serious is Writing?

   Posted by: Garrett   in Orson Scott Card

I attended a lecture at Brigham Young University (BYU) today at which Orson Scott Card spoke. He titled it: I just make this stuff up, how seriously should a fiction writer take his own work.

He talked about lots of different things, but it was mainly about archiving records, since the reason he was speaking was the 30th anniversary of Ender’s Game and the unveiling of the OSC exhibit with lots of first printings and original manuscripts and such.

He mentioned about the importance of keeping artifacts of our lives. He pointed out that this is especially important for our descendants (genealogy, in other words). He talked about how important it is to save these things for our children so we (or others) can see why they became the person they did. In fact, he said that his writings and artifacts are more a statement about his children than about him.

Someone asked him what the most important thing in writing is. After a wisecrack about words, he replied “clarity”. Several people around me were trying to guess what he was going to say, and they were all shocked at his response.

He talked about when his fiction is worthwhile: a person reads it and then applies the lessons to their own life.

It was a very enjoyable couple hours. I didn’t even care that I was supposed to be at work. :-}

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