So the desire to make a living as a writer is a true perversion in this culture but I think we need our perverts more than ever. I think in the same way that curators and event organizers have to think more widely to mix audiences we writers have to think more systemically about what a writer is, and how one genre opens into another as do readers and audience. We’re making our living as writers in this same new world. How does each piece I write relate to the whole I’m writing, or creating in time. Rather than simply thinking about who’s paying me I have to think of the whole life project. And you need to say no to a lot of stuff. Events and invites in order to make some real time to think the whole big picture through. So you need a lot of courage and imagination and stupidity — and trust — that since the culture needs you it will support you. It must. It’s a crazy notion but I think it’s true and we make it true by acting on it. To be a working writer is a political act.
- Eileen Myles on The Situation in American Writing on Full Stop