- This is the stuff inspiration is made of
After reading the obituary of science fiction author Jack Vance in the New York Times the other day, I have decided at age 55 that this is what I want to be when I grow up. When and how – or even if – I decide to grow up are items still open to considerable speculation and discussion amongst interested parties, namely myself and my other self, but if and when that day does arrive, my course is set; I will inhale the life of Jack Vance, then breathe hard into the sails of my ship.
This is a writer who lived to age 96, which by itself is an act requiring great skill and daring these days. But most impressively of all, this is a man who wrote – and published – more than 60 books over a career that lasted nearly as many years. Jack Vance did what writers do, which is to write. And write. And write some more. Writer’s block be damned. Don’t you see the Men at Work sign?
I confess I have never read any of Mr. Vance’s books, but that is about to change. Not just because he was a writer of science fiction (a label he apparently didn’t care for much), but because he was an acknowledged master of the craft, and there is no better way to become a master than to study those who came before.
This is the stuff inspiration is made of.