Quote of the Day

“Novels are never about what they are about; that is, there is always deeper, or more general, significance. The author may not be aware of this till she is pretty far along with it. A novel’s whole pattern is rarely apparent at the outset of writing, or even at the end; that is when the writer finds out what a novel is about, and the job becomes one of understanding and deepening or sharpening what is already written. That is finding the theme.”–Diane Johnson

Very much agree with that. I don’t think many writers sit down to write about a particular theme and end up with a compelling story. Themes have to emerge naturally and with layers of complication.

(H/T Advice to Writers)

4 thoughts on “Quote of the Day

  1. I found that was true with my writing. One day I realized that my entire trilogy parallels the history of the Jewish people back to an incident involving King Saul.

    Which is rather bizarre considering I wasn’t a Jew when I wrote it.

  2. Very true. I often find I’m writing with a theme and not knowing it until it emerges from the story. I love that. Makes me feel like I am doing something right–meaningful.

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