Advice for writers: J.G. Ballard


A lifetime’s experience urges me to utter a warning cry: do anything else, take someone’s golden retriever for a walk, run away with a saxophone player. Perhaps what is wrong with being a writer is that one can’t even say good luck – luck plays no part in the writing of a novel.  No happy accidents as with the paint pot or chisel. I don’t think you can say anything, really. I’ve always wanted to juggle and ride a unicycle, but   I dare say if I ever ask the advice of an acrobat he would say,’ All you do is get on and start pedalling …’

J. G. Ballard, p. 306

George Plimpton, The Writer’s Chapbook, Viking 1989.

2 thoughts on “Advice for writers: J.G. Ballard

  1. Perhaps part of the problem is that playing the saxophone and taking the lab for a walk is over, and then you are left with the knowledge that you still have to write. They were pleasant distractions, but the writing is yours, implacable, and patient.

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