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James Michener


"When I am through writing a book, I turn to music or painting.  I also look at postcards of great works of art, which I have collected since I was a boy.  I leaf through them at least once a week."












American Novelist


1907 - 1997











For James Michener, all the arts were important.  He funded an art museum in Doylestown, PA, called the James A. Michener Art Museum.  He once said, "I have tried all the arts because I think one should respond to the art of his time and should be aware of what good people are doing."  





Do you expose yourself to the other types of art or do you limit yourself to your own speciality?  If you are a painter, do you only study painting?  Or do you read the novelists and the poets?  Do you attend theater and listen to storytellers?  If you are a novelist, do you study painting, sculpture and dance?  I call it cross-fertilization.  Exposure to other forms of art opens up new worlds and expands your imagination.





Michener also wrote: "One of the reasons why I have had good luck in writing is that I have always visualized my characters in the style of this painting and have kept them in my mind that way for a year or two before describing them in practical terms.  Thus one senses the weight and movement of a character and comes to know what that character is worth in the balance of the story."






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