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She would say that that happens, and she had rituals on how to bring the soul back. My idea was that it’s art that can help you bring it back. The writing of the story, the painting of what you have seen. Some of the veterans are painters and movie makers, but I think it’s the writing, the word by word, that brings people home. 

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But thou hast only the right to work; but none of the fruit thereof; let not then the fruit of thy action be thy motive; nor yet be thou enamored in inaction

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I can produce copy–that’s not a problem. I can produce books left and right. The question is, What do you want your name on? What do you want to endure?

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To be a better writer requires finding a way to care about things more deeply and more broadly, to become more interested in the world, to observe it more finely.

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If you are what you ought to be, you will set fire to all Italy, and not only yonder.

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