Monday, October 22, 2007

J.K. Rowling Meets Ernest Hemingway

J.K. Rowling’s big revelation this weekend that Albus Dumbledore is gay reminded me of Hemingway’s “iceberg principle”: "If a writer of prose knows enough about what he is writing about he may omit things that he knows and the reader, if the writer is writing truly enough, will have a feeling of those things as strongly as though the writer had stated them. The dignity of movement of the iceberg is due to only one-eighth of it being above water. The writer who omits things because he does not know them only makes hollow places in his writing."

So the discovery was surprising yet inevitable—because she had that knowledge about that character in her head, the resonance is there on the page, even if the exact words are not...what we should all aspire to in our writing.


DC-area author Leslie Pietrzyk explores the creative process and all things literary.