Writer Tip c. 1960

After class I was chillin’ with my bro, aka Campus Library, when I found an aisle with rows upon rows of writing/literature books sporting a nice undisturbed layer of dust. (It’s like finding buried treasure —  I’m guaranteed to find pages upon which not one pair of eyes of my fellow 50,000+ students had rested in who knows how long. And I like blowing the dust off of my selections like I’m in a haunted house.)

I sifted through titles for publication dates from before my birth to hang out with a generation I could never meet.

The Art of Writing by Andre Maurois (1960)

None of the hardback books had dustjackets (HA!) so I needed to read the intro, forward or first chapter to get an idea of what they’re really about. After taking and replacing a few, I grabbed The Art of Writing. The first chapter initially touched on the writer, followed by the writer’s craft.

According to Mr. Maurois, perfection of craft aside, a writer must have this one thing to be great.

The One Thing: “A great philosophy

I grinned alone in my aisle as if passed a note containing an inside joke because I don’t think any modern writing book had ever told me that (if one had, it hadn’t struck me in the same way). Shutting the book, I considered the Crayon orange cover, pleased with having met Mr. Maurois (1885-1967) even if it’s only his paper remains.

Me: (aloud, bad habit) “I like you, sir. Let’s hang out later.”


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