Friday, March 18, 2016

Blue Chair: Creating Texture by Natalie Goldberg

These details I add are in primary colors, one or two washes, not the deep texture like the chair, the centerpiece, the thing that has gravity, presence, deep dimension, that holds the story. The details around it are human delight, charming fluff, transitory nature, like in a memoir the details point to the structure, which is the chair, the driving force, the reason the whole thing is happening. (212)
--Natalie Goldberg, The True Secret of Writing, "Blue Chair Creating Texture."

Every sentence is worth reading, but this is the moment in the book that most stood out to me. She describes painting a chair, turquoise, red, purple, all the colors beneath the final blue. The details around it are reminiscent of her crowded writing room ("on the floor a cup of hot chocolate and that pink cupcake in the silver paper with a red cherry on top") and the texture of the chair becomes the texture of the writing itself ("over time, you learn to cultivate texture, a richness to what you write, adding layers, where you can almost feel the plush velvet").

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