martes, 13 de marzo de 2012

Escritura compulsiva

Estoy que no escribo—al menos no compulsivamente. Y esa es la única escritura que vale la pena, según Mark C. Taylor:

The only writers worth reading are writers who cannot not write. They are obsessed, though they know not by what. Indeed, if they knew what obsesses them, they would no longer have to write. For genuine writers writing is neither a job nor a profession—it is nothing less than life itself. If asked why they write, they can only echo Luther standing before the Diet of Worms: "I can do no other". They do not write to earn money or in the hope of becoming a tenured professor; writing without why, they write because they must write. Their work requires no research other than life itself. The true writer obsessively pursues the sentence that will make his life worth living. Scholars who cannot write are granted tenure for their books about writers who can.


But writing to pass time by distracting us from what we feel compelled to avoid is not really writing. The writing that matters neither comforts nor reassures but relentlessly turns us toward what turns us away.

The obsession that allows—no, requires—one to write is as much a curse as a blessing. Ordinary writers confronted with a blank page fear words will not come; obsessed writers dread they will never stop. Day and night, night and day, words leave the writer no rest. They arrive when and where they will, crowding out other thoughts and interrupting sleep that is never sound. Once they start, no distraction will stop them—they flow faster than the hand can record them. Ask the writer where they come from and she will in all likelihood confess she does not know and is not even sure it is she who writers. Writing seems to emerge from a fathomless elsewhere. Though more interior than the most profound inwardness, the elsewhere that is the whence of writing is where I am by not being there. When the writer signs books, she knows her name is doubled by an anonymity that speaks pseudonymously in words that are not her own.


The writing that matters is not a choice—it is a gift that imposes burdens that cannot be refused. The obsession of writing often carries a hight price: Kierkegaard collapsed on the streets of Copenhagen at the age of 42 and died a few days later. Nietzsche slipped into madness at 46 and lingered for a decade; Poe fell into a drunken stupor on a Baltimore street and died alone and unknown when he was 40; Melville faded from the public eye when he was only 33 and lived in solitude and anonymity for decades. There were others, many others. Often the more intensely the flame of writing burns the more briefly it lasts. For the serious writer the true tragedy is not going mad or dying young but continuing to write when he has nothing left to say.

La escritura compulsiva hay una perspectiva neurológica: ver "Hiperreligiosidad, Hiperconectividad, Hipergrafia y Apofenia."  (E. O. Wilson).

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