An Extra Dose of Compassion

“I mean, when you’re like on your sixth year of a novel, it’s real easy—and you’ve taught a student in a workshop and they’ll write a novel in six months—it’s not unimaginable that you’ll blame yourself. A friend of mine said something that was helpful for me and pushed me through this. Every time you write a new book, even if it’s your first book, the hard part isn’t writing it. The hard part is becoming that person you have to become to finish the book. And usually what you need to finish a book is not more talent or more workshops or more criticism. Usually what you need to finish your book is an extra dose of compassion, not just simply to connect to your characters—that helps. But usually the compassion that you need to connect to your characters is first modeled whether you’re compassionate to yourself.”

Junot Diaz

You’re My Home

Home can be the Pennsylvania Turnpike
Indiana’s early morning dew
High up in the hills of California
Home is just another word for you

Well I never had a place that I could call my very own
That’s all right, my love, ’cause you’re my home

If I travel all my life
And I never get to stop and settle down
Long as I have you by my side
There’s a roof above and good walls all around
You’re my castle, you’re my cabin and my instant pleasure dome
I need you in my house ’cause you’re my home.
You’re my home.

-Billy Joel

Nothing That is Worth Doing

Nothing that is worth doing can be achieved in our lifetime;
therefore, we must be saved by hope.

Nothing which is true or beautiful or good makes complete sense in any immediate context of history;
therefore, we must be saved by faith.

Nothing we do, however virtuous, could be accomplished alone;
therefore, we must be saved by love.

No virtuous act is quite as virtuous from the standpoint of our friend or foe as it is from our own standpoint;
therefore, we must be saved by the final form of love, which is forgiveness.

-Reinhold Niebuhr

Every Christmas Morning Now, Every Christmas Morning Then

“There are no days more full than those we go back to. All those Christmases collide into each other and my memory is decorated by a series of mirrors, flashing light into chambers of sound and colour…the briquettes sparking red-layered on the fire, the crinkling of the ridiculous paper hats at dinnertime…and the laughter moving to deep silence at three in the afternoon when we leaned up against one another like old tires, full of turkey and gravy and trifle and God knows how many slices of plum pudding.”

“Every Christmas morning now is full of every Christmas morning then and we are still allowed to dream.”

Colum McCann