Soaked by sentences on a rainy Sunday morning
From words, to phrases, to sentences we leap
Sentences that break open and blush
A list of ten gorgeous and compelling sentences
Virginia Woolf , 1954, A Writer’s Diary, p. 194
“There’s no trifling with words—can’t be done: not when they’re to stand ‘forever’ ”.
bell hooks, 1999, Remembered Rapture: The Writer at Work, p. 45
“That moment when I whirl with words is a space of transgression and I write to live”.
Ruth Ozeki, A Tale for the Time Being, p. 24
“For the time being, words scatter…are they fallen leaves?”
Jeanette Winterson, Lighthousekeeping, p. 135
“Words are part of the silence that can be spoken”.
Ursula K. Le Guin, 1989, Dancing at the Edge of the World, p. 169
Sylvia Plath, 2000, The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath, p. 191
“Words revolve in flame and keep the coliseum heart afire, reflecting orange sunken suns in the secret petals of ruined arches. yes, the glowing asbestos thorns and whistling flame flowers reflect the cells of the scarlet heart and the coliseum burns on, without a nero, on the brink of blackness. so words have power to open sesame and reveal liberal piles of golden metallic suns in the dark pit that wait to be melted and smelted in the fire of spring which springs to fuse lumps and clods into veins of radiance”.
Simone de Beauvoir, 1974, All Said and Done, p. 192
“Words have this immense privilege: you can take them with you”.
Hélène Cixous, 1988, Stigmata: Escaping Texts, p. 196
“Only words in love sow”.
Patti Smith, 2017, Devotion, p. 26
“As I knelt to place the small bundle beneath her name, words formed, tumbling like a nursery song”.
Virginina Woolf, 1931, The Waves, p. 95
“When I cannot see words curling like rings of smoke round me I am in darkness —I am nothing”.
|↑1||A fiercely eco-feminist friend and voracious reader often recommends books she has recently read she thinks I might like. For weeks Renee kept saying, “Oh Liz, you have to read The luminous solution, I think you’ll love it” and she was right. I had not heard of Charlotte Wood until then, even though her oeuvre is broad, and her writing attracts abundant critical acclaim. She is the author of six novels and three books of non-fiction, and her books are often named on prize lists. Animal people won the People’s Choice Award at the NSW Premier’s Literary Awards in 2013. The natural way of things was variously short and long listed for 14 literary prizes in 2016 and won the Stella Prize, the Indie Book and Fiction Book of the Year, and the Prime Minister’s Literary Award for fiction in 2016. Her most recent novel The weekend was shortlisted for the same in 2020. In 2017 her PhD on creativity, Looking for trouble: Problem finding processes in literary creativity, won the UNSW Arts and Social Sciences Dean’s Award for Best Doctoral Thesis. In 2019 Wood was listed on the Australian Financial Review’s 100 Women of Influence in 2019 and awarded a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for significant services to literature.|
|↑2||In 1998, Steering the Craft, p. 20.|
|↑3||In Brooks Landon, 2013, Building Great Sentences: How to Write the Kinds of Sentences You Love to Read.|
|↑5||Emily Dickinson, 1970, The Complete Poems, #254, p. 116.|
|↑6||Virginia Woolf, 2008, “Craftsmanship”, in Selected Essays, p. 88.|
|↑7||Virginia Woolf, 1942, “The man at the gate”, in Death of the Moth and Other Essays, p. 104.|
|↑8||Gertrude Stein, 1969, Narration: Four Lectures, p. 15.|
|↑9||Hélène Cixous, 1988, Stigmata: Escaping Texts, p. 196|
|↑10||Hélène Cixous, 1988, Stigmata: Escaping Texts, p. 196.|
|↑11||Virginia Woolf, 2008, “Craftsmanship”, in Selected Essays, p. 88|
|↑12, ↑16||Ursula K. Le Guin, 1998, Steering the Craft, p. 23.|
|↑13||Letter to Ethel Smyth, 7th April, 1933, in 1982, The Letters of Virginia Woolf : Vol. 5, p. 303.|
|↑14||Sylvia Plath, 2000, The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath, p. 305.|
|↑15||Hélène Cixous, 1988, Stigmata: Escaping Texts, p. 121.|
|↑17||Getrude Stein, 1990, “The autobipography of Alice Toklas”, in Selected Writings of Gertrude Stein, p. 194.|
|↑18||Charlotte Wood, 2021, The Luminous Solution, p. 127.|
|↑19||Hélène Cixous, 1988, Stigmata: Escaping Texts, p. 195.|
|↑20||Virginia Woolf, 1976, Moments of Being: Unpublished Autobiographical Writings, p. 72.|
|↑21||Merriam-Webster. (n.d.). Gorgeous. In Merriam-Webster.com dictionary. Retrieved March 15, 2023, from https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/gorgeous|
|↑22||Dorothy Allison, 1994, Skin, p. 180.|
|↑23, ↑24||Dorothy Allison, 1988, Trash, p. 7.|
|↑25||Dorothy Allison, 1993, Bastard Out of Carolina, p. 4.|
|↑26||Dorothy Allison, 1995, Two or Three Things I Know for Sure, p. 91.|
|↑27||Sylvia Plath, 2000, The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath, p. 327|