That’s so classic of The New Yorker to feel that if you weren’t at The New Yorker you were essentially homeless and living hand-to-mouth on crap.
Writing gives me great feelings of pleasure. There’s a marvelous sense of mastery that comes with writing a sentence that sounds exactly as you want it to. It’s like trying to write a song, making tiny tweaks, reading it out loud, shifting things to make it sound a certain way. It’s very physical. I get antsy. I jiggle my feet a lot, get up a lot, tap my fingers on the keyboard, check my e-mail. Sometimes it feels like digging out of a hole, but sometimes it feels like flying. When it’s working and the rhythm’s there, it does feel like magic to me.
Susan Orlean, on why she writes.
Anyone who has a kid spends an enormous amount of his or her reading time with children’s books. This can be painful…The thing is, I love reading to my son, and there is almost nothing that thrills me more than when he begs me for just one more chapter. That he loves books is one of my greatest satisfactions. I just don’t always love his books. That’s why, when we first started The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo, I hesitated.
Susan Orlean’s Year in Reading.