The story must strike a nerve — in me. My heart should start pounding when I hear the first line in my head. I start trembling at the risk."
- Susan Sontag.(6/27/73)
It was through her essays that Sontag gained early fame and notoriety.
Sontag wrote frequently about the intersection of high and low art and expanded the dichotomy concept of form and art in every media.
She elevated Camp to the status of recognition with her widely-read 1964 essay Notes on 'Camp', thus expanding Art to include common, absurd, and burlesque themes.
It expounded the "so bad it's good" concept of popular culture for the first time.
Here are a few of her thoughts on writing:
"In ‘life,’ I don’t want to be reduced to my work. In ‘work,’ I don’t want to be reduced to my life.
My work is too austere
My life is a brutal anecdote."
"The solution to a problem — a story that you are unable to finish — is the problem.
It isn’t as if the problem is one thing and the solution something else.
The problem, properly understood = the solution. Instead of trying to hide or efface what limits the story, capitalize on that very limitation. State it, rail against it."
"There is a great deal that either has to be given up or be taken away from you if you are going to succeed in writing a body of work."
Making lists of words, to thicken my active vocabulary. To have puny, not just little, hoax, not just trick, mortifying, not just embarrassing, bogus, not just fake.
I could make a story out of puny, hoax, mortifying, bogus. They are a story."
wrote of finding the perfect tune for his current novel.
As it turned out, the tune also gave me the title to a chapter in THREE SPIRIT KNIGHT but worked its way into the prose, too. Thank you, Elliot.
(See if you can spot Johnny Depp in this video)