When the sentence no longer seems mine but speaks back to me
Always ask the student writer, “What do you want to say?” Every sentence that answers that question is part of the essay or story. Every sentence that does not needs to go.
Stephen King speaking to Atlantic's Jessica Lahey
Reminds me of another interview, this time David Michael speaking with Richard Rodriguez.
Aquinas described writing as a form of prayer. Writing is for me dishearteningly hermetic. Revision is writing. Revision is humiliation—Tuesday saying something less well than Monday. Revision is open to noticing connections. Revision is joy at precisely that moment when the sentence no longer seems mine but speaks back to me and haughtily resists further revision.