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Most creative writing guidebooks recommend freewriting, but they don’t mention its origin in Freud’s theories and Surrealist practice. If freewriting is magic, then going back to the source might be where the magic is strongest.
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The Surrealist Muse
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Category Archives: Surrealism
The artist Dorothea Tanning lived to the age of 101. Her long career as a painter, sculptor and writer is being celebrated now at Tate Modern in London. And what a celebration! For as long as Dali is better known … Continue reading
This post is about stories in films and books, and in life. The stories we consume are very often structured in an artificial way, but we’ve become so used to the shape of stories in Hollywood films such as rom-coms … Continue reading
If a historical novel is defined as one in which events from history are presented as they actually happened, then my unpublished novel Swimming with Tigers doesn’t qualify as one. The alterations I have made to the facts about the … Continue reading
Liverpool Tate’s summer exhibition is called Life in Motion and places paintings by Egon Schiele next to photographs by Francesca Woodman. Schiele was Austrian, working before World War One and Woodman was American, producing her photographs in the 1970s. Arguably … Continue reading
Can you name any Surrealist novels? I don’t mean books with surreal elements such as magical, illogical or dream-like ideas or events, I mean novels about Surrealism as a movement or depicting Surrealist artists. No? That’s because there are very … Continue reading
The Oxford English Dictionary defines a muse as “a person (often a female lover) or thing regarded as the source of an artist’s inspiration”. Here is one of the muses of Surrealism: The image appeared on the cover of the … Continue reading
My novel about the Surrealists, Swimming with Tigers, is loosely based on real people and events, but having the latitude to adapt, recombine and invent elements and individuals within the movement made it possible for me to recreate key moments … Continue reading
Right now, like my own students, I’m revising my work. On April 8th, a year after starting, I completed the first draft of my new novel The Dead Have Time to Listen. It was an intense last few weeks in … Continue reading
What is your definition of beauty? Have you got a favourite line of poetry that describes beauty by using an image to suggest it? If you have, it’s probably not this often-quoted Surrealist simile: “As beautiful as the chance encounter … Continue reading
Major solo exhibitions of women Surrealists are extremely rare so when I first heard that Liverpool Tate were putting on an exhibition of work by the painter and writer Leonora Carrington, I was excited. This would be the first British … Continue reading