Tag Archives: Marcel Mauss

1 of 8

Kurt Vonnegut had eight base rules for writing fiction. His number eight comes close to being my favorite, but seven steals out instead: “write to please just one person. If you open a window and make love to the world, so to speak, your story will get pneumonia.”

I don’t/haven’t read Vonnegut often, and was initially drawn to his fiction simply by virtue of the author’s (rejected) pursuit of an MA in anthropology after completing a BS in biochemistry, and thus felt some form of affinity. Vonnugut magnetized towards anthropology, which he called “a science that was mostly poetry, that involved almost no math at all.” And it must have been some contribution of anthropological thinking that allowed Vonnegut to state his modus operandi on the workings of being a writer:

“Many people need desperately to receive this message: I feel and think much as you do, care about many of the things you care about, although most people do not care about them. You are not alone.”

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