Sunday, July 26, 2009

Slice of the Writing Life: Nikki Giovanni

Award-winning author, poet and activist Nikki Giovanni was asked what advice she gives young writers.

Here’s her answer:

“Let's own it. This is mine. This is how I feel about it. The authority of the writer always overcomes the skepticism of the reader. If you know what you're talking about, or if you feel that you do, the reader will believe you. That's why we believe Frank Baum. Who would believe Dorothy and a house and a dog up in a tornado? We believe it because the author believes it. We believe Peter Rabbit because Beatrix Potter believes it. You have to. The authority of the writing will always overcome that. You can't hedge your bets. If you do, people will say, ‘Hmm. Where did you get that from?’ You can't do that. Just don't do it.”

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