Tag Archive: writer

Lewis Carroll

Lewis Carroll - famous dyslexic

Lewis Carroll - famous dyslexic

Lewis Carroll; Victorian author of Alice in Wonderland.
Born: January 27, 1832
Died: January 14, 1898

Perhaps no other author ever captured what it means to be dyslexic as Lewis Carroll. Here are just a few samples.

But I was thinking of a way To multiply by ten, And always, in the answer, get The question back again.

Contrariwise, if it was so, it might be; and if it were so, it would be; but as it isn’t, it ain’t. That’s logic.

His answer trickled through my head like water through a sieve.

I have proved by actual trial that a letter, that takes an hour to write, takes only about 3 minutes to read!

It’s a poor sort of memory that only works backwards.

That’s the reason they’re called lessons, because they lesson from day to day.

‘What is the use of a book’, thought Alice, ‘without pictures or conversations?’

‘When I use a word,’ Humpty Dumpty said in rather a scornful tone, ‘it means just what I choose it to mean – neither more nor less.’

Which form of proverb do you prefer–Better late than never, or Better never than late?

On the other hand, perhaps no one else ever so thoroughly captured what it means to be human, either.

Who in the world am I? Ah, that’s the great puzzle.
One of the secrets of life is that all that is really worth the doing is what we do for others.

Agatha Christie

Agatha Christie: one of the most successful mystery writers of all time.
Born: September 15, 1890
Died: January 12, 1976

She created Miss Marple and penned her adventures. She gave Hercule Pierot his monocle and fussy ways. She holds the Guinness Book Record for best selling writer of books. But for famous mystery writer Agatha Christie, the first mystery in her life was trying to read.

I, myself, was always recognized . . . as the “slow one” in the family. It was quite true, and I knew it and accepted it. Writing and spelling were always terribly difficult for me. My letters were without originality. I was . . . an extraordinarily bad speller and have remained so until this day.

She attributed the early challenges of those years to shaping who she became.

The popular idea that a child forgets easily is not an accurate one. Many people go right through life in the grip of an idea which has been impressed on them in very tender years.

Thus, it was in that which most challenged her that she found solace.

Writing is a great comfort to people like me, who are unsure of themselves and have trouble expressing themselves properly.

In dealing with her dyslexia, Christie followed her own good advice.

I have learnt that I am me, that I can do the things that, as one might put it, me can do, but I cannot do the things that me would like to do.

Stephen J. Cannell

Stephen J. Cannell: American Television writer and producer, novelist.
Born: February 5, 1941
Died: October 2, 2010

Stephen J. Cannell has created or co-created almost 40 television series, mostly crime dramas. Some of his shows include The Rockford Files, The A-Team, The Greatest American Hero, Wiseguy, and The Commish. In the process he has, by his own count, scripted 450 and produced or executive produced over 1500 episodes. For his television work, he won a Writer’s Guild Award (Tenspeed and Brownshoe) and an Emmy (Best Drama for The Rockford Files). Along the way he has authored 17 crime novels and has acted occasionally in his own television shows.

And he’s accomplished all this in spite of—or perhaps because of—his severe dyslexia.

“Since I was the stupidest kid in my class, it never occurred to me to try and be perfect, so I’ve always been happy as a writer just to entertain myself. That’s an easier place to start.”

He graduated with a journalism degree from the University of Oregon. He once hired typists as a way of overcoming his “spelling problem” (his term for his dyslexia) and frequently dictates story ideas or even complete scripts to his personal secretary. As a spokesperson for dyslexia, one of his major themes is how the disability does not have to be a limitation—something he’s shown in his own life.

“I was the only kid in my first-grade class who couldn’t read. But I can write a novel in three months.”

Gustave Flaubert

Gustave Flaubert: French author of Madame Bovary.
Born December 12, 1821
Died May 8, 1880

Gustave Flaubert may have been one of the first writers to ever articulate what it means to be dyslexic.
I have the handicap of being born with a special language to which I alone have the key.
Human speech is like a cracked kettle on which we tap crude rhythms for bears to dance to, while we long to make music that will melt the stars.
A superhuman will is needed in order to write, and I am only a man.
In many ways, Flaubert was an oxymoron. Legendary for his use of style in writing, he nonetheless struggled with the written word throughout his life. He commented often and emphatically about his inadequacies. And yet, his devotion to his craft allowed him to use the strengths of dyslexia to his advantage.

All one’s inventions are true, you can be sure of that. Poetry is as exact a science as geometry.

Life must be a constant education; one must learn everything, from speaking to dying.
One arrives at style only with atrocious effort, with fanatical and devoted stubbornness.

He summed up his perspective of life in this way.
The most glorious moments in your life are not the so-called days of success, but rather those days when out of dejection and despair you feel rise in you a challenge to life, and the promise of future accomplishments.

Ernest Hemingway

Ernest Hemingway: among the greatest authors of the 20th Century
Born July 21, 1899
Died July 2, 1961

Ernest Hemingway is best known for the stark realism of his writing, especially on war and the impact it has on people’s lives. Perhaps his sense of that impact stems, at least in part, from his personal battles with the demons inside his head, demons that might have kept the master of the 20th century war story from ever writing anything.

All my life I’ve looked at words as though I were seeing them for the first time.

For a long time now I have tried simply to write the best I can. Sometimes I have good luck and write better than I can.

It’s none of their business that you have to learn how to write. Let them think you were born that way.

Throughout his life Hemingway neither asked nor gave any quarter in his work, instead simply describing the world as he saw it and challenging his reader to have the courage to look at life through his eyes. He offers these words of encouragement to those struggling with their own battles.

The world breaks everyone, and afterward, some are strong at the broken places.

A man can be destroyed but not defeated.

Every man’s life ends the same way. It is only the details of how he lived and how he died that distinguishes one man from another.

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