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Allende, Isabel 1994

Tuesday, November 1, 1994

Language is essential to a writer, and language is as personal as blood. I live in California—in English—but I can only write in Spanish. In fact, all the fundamental things in my life happen in Spanish, like scolding my grandchildren, cooking, or making love.

– Isabel Allende, “How I Became A Writer”

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Read this interview with Isabel Allende:

Isabel Allende – Interview

I allow the characters to live their own lives in the book. Often I have the feeling that I don’t control them. The story goes in unexpected directions and my job is to write it down, not to force it into my previous ideas.

Watch Isabel Allende give a TED Talk called “Tales of passion:”

More info on Isabel Allende⇒

Isabel Allende is one of the most widely-read authors in the world, having sold more than 74 million books. Born in Peru and raised in Chile, her work, both in English and in Spanish, has been translated into more than forty-two languages. She is the recipient of fifteen honorary doctorates, including one from Harvard University, the PEN Center Lifetime Achievement Award, and the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

Atwood, Margaret 1976

Friday, January 16, 1976
The Poetry Center at the Museum of Contemporary Art

Vintage poster of Margaret Atwood's reading at the Poetry Center of Chicago.

Vintage poster of Margaret Atwood’s reading at the Poetry Center of Chicago.

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Made with blood, with coloured
dirt, with smoke, not meant
to be seen but to remain
there hidden, potent
in the dark…

– Margaret Atwood, “For Archeologists”

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Read this interview with Margaret Atwood from the Paris Review:

The Art of Fiction No. 121

The manuscript of “Frogless,” a poem that appears in this issue, by Margaret Atwood. Ms. Atwood wrote the poem on an SAS Hotel’s bedside notepad while she was in Gothenburg, Sweden last September for the Nordic Book Fair. “I’ve written quite a lot under those…

In the burned house I am eating breakfast.
You understand: there is no house, there is no breakfast,
yet here I am.

– Margaret Atwood, “Morning in the Burned House”

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Watch Margaret Atwood discuss writing for PEN America:

Dialogue Series: Margaret Atwood on the Writers’ Mind and the Digital Otherworld

With Margaret Atwood and Amy Grace Loyd What does it mean to write with the Web? How does our constant access to information and ideas affect the landscape of imagination? What are the ramifications on the craft?

More info on Margaret Atwood⇒