What does Prince have to do with writing? Everything if you’re a kid growing up in a dead-end town in a state that everyone forgets exists and everything around you is the worst and your stupid stepbrother told your parents that they shouldn’t let you buy Purple Rain because there’s a song on there about masturbation. But you find a way to listen to it anyway and you learn about sex and desire and the weird and awesome wonderfulness that awaits you out in the world. And then one day years later, you write a masturbation scene in your novel and you think: Thanks, Prince, for telling kids all the things that grownups were too scared for us to learn.
Aside from that, here are this week’s links.
- Dead Darlings contributor and Novel Incubator alumni Alison Murphy interviews Pulitzer Prize-winning author Viet Thanh Nguyen On Not Getting Lost in Translation.
- “A slacker’s day is a series of refusals… Saying no is critical to the creative life.” Author Monica McFawn on Differently Motivated: In Defense of the Slacker-Writer.
- That fictional relationship your writing group finds unbelievable? Your beta readers may say, “I’ve met too many seemingly mismatched couples to think this is unbelievable or uncommon.” A consideration of the differences between readers and writers you seek out for critique.
- Another Pulitzer Prize winner, Lin-Manuel Miranda, creator the Broadway musical, Hamilton, drops by the New York Times to discuss books.
- South Park creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker share their top plotting tip using the key words “but” and “therefore.”