Monday, May 27, 2013

Hemingway: Each Book a New Beginning

“For a true writer each book should be a new beginning where he tries again for something that is beyond attainment. He should always try for something that has never been done or that others have tried and failed. Then sometimes, with great luck, he will succeed.”
In 1954, Ernest Hemingway was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature, a prize which, at the time, he said he felt unworthy of. Hemingway said publicly that Isak Dinesen, Bernard Berenson and Carl Sandburg had each been more deserving than he.

Eventually, Hemingway gave in and accepted both the honor and the award (thoughts are, he needed the money) but he didn’t personally attend the ceremony, opting instead to have the US Ambassador to Sweden read a lovely acceptance speech which Hemingway had written for the occasion.

Maria Popova’s Brain Pickings reproduces a transcript of the speech here, as well as an excerpt of it recorded in Hemingway’s own voice at a later date.



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