Drawing on some 3,000 published interviews with contemporary authors, Authors on Writing: Metaphors and Intellectual Labor reveals new ways of conceiving of writing as intellectual labor. Authors' metaphorical stories about composing highlight not interior worlds but socially situated cultures of composing and apparatuses of authorship. Through an original method of interpreting metaphorical stories, Tomlinson argues that writing is both an individual activity and a collective practice, a solitary activity that depends upon rich, sustained, and complex social networks, institutions, and beliefs. This new book draws upon interviews with writers including: Seamus Heaney, Roald Dahl, Samuel Beckett, Bret Easton Ellis, John Fowles, Allen Ginsburg, Alice Walker and Gore Vidal.
BARBARA TOMLINSON is Associate Professor of Literature and Director of the Muir Writing Program at the University of California, San Diego, USA. She has published articles in a wide range of scholarly journals, including Signs, Cultural Critique, The Journal of Medical Anthropology, Configurations, Written Communication, and Metaphor and Symbolic Activity.