Monday, February 17, 2014

I'm a-gettin' steamed!

Essays these days.

They're so pipsqueak. They lack spirit, imagination, and flair. They're so comfortably cocooned inside a Paris-to-New York milieu of mincing trope, namedropping erudition, and goes-without-saying self-importance.  Also thematic banality -- writing stuff just to be writing stuff. 

A proper essay thinks by the seat of its freakin' pants. It goes somewhere unexpected. It makes your reading brain blink, astounded by paragraphs happening as prose art. 

An essay should vibrate with originality. An audacious essay is, oddly, an act of humility: a willingness to appear somewhat nuts in the compulsion to explore dubious territory by relying on sheer wits.

Thomas De Quincey wrote real essays:

Thomas De Quincey essays

1 comment:

  1. Between De Quincey and Yosemite Sam: we don't need opium, all we need to do is open our eyes and become intoxicated on ideas.