Bukowski on Writing

so you want to be a writer?
by Charles Bukowski

if it doesn’t come bursting out of you
in spite of everything,
don’t do it.
unless it comes unasked out of your
heart and your mind and your mouth
and your gut,
don’t do it.
if you have to sit for hours
staring at your computer screen
or hunched over your
searching for words,
don’t do it.
if you’re doing it for money or
don’t do it.
if you’re doing it because you want
women in your bed,
don’t do it.
if you have to sit there and
rewrite it again and again,
don’t do it.
if it’s hard work just thinking about doing it,
don’t do it.
if you’re trying to write like somebody
forget about it.
if you have to wait for it to roar out of
then wait patiently.
if it never does roar out of you,
do something else.
if you first have to read it to your wife
or your girlfriend or your boyfriend
or your parents or to anybody at all,
you’re not ready.
don’t be like so many writers,
don’t be like so many thousands of
people who call themselves writers,
don’t be dull and boring and
pretentious, don’t be consumed with self-
the libraries of the world have
yawned themselves to
over your kind.
don’t add to that.
don’t do it.
unless it comes out of
your soul like a rocket,
unless being still would
drive you to madness or
suicide or murder,
don’t do it.
unless the sun inside you is
burning your gut,
don’t do it.
when it is truly time,
and if you have been chosen,
it will do it by
itself and it will keep on doing it
until you die or it dies in you.
there is no other way.
and there never was.

Range Tips: Practice Nine Holes

The reality of being a law student is that I don’t play as much golf as I used to. I’ve been hitting a lot of range balls lately, though. And to combat the rather monotonous activity of hitting ball after ball into a wide open field, I visualize holes that I’ve played many times and hit shots accordingly.

E.g., The country club in my home town starts with a par four with a large Oak Tree overhanging the left landing area of the fairway. So, on the range I would be looking to hit a draw with my driver, which would leave me a wedge in.

It is best to be specific when doing this. Take note of the wind, where the pin is on your “imaginary” green, and what type of shot you want to hit. You’ll be switching clubs a lot, but see this is a great approach to hitting range balls that makes your practice count.