I have just returned from London, which is why this post is a day late.
But there was plenty to occupy my writerly mind there – an excellently crafted production of The Cursed Child, and a tour of Shakespeare’s Globe with adjacent museum. They weren’t the only things we did, oldest and I, but they were the things which made the most impression on me. So, having quoted J.K. Rowling already this month, let’s turn our attention to Shakespeare.
The thing that struck me most was that Shakespeare was nothing like the lofty intellect we so often assume. He was down-to-earth and practical: an actor, a producer, a theatre owner, an entrepreneur! Writing came with the territory, and he excelled at it, but much, much more was expected of him than that. He described the process like this:
And as imagination bodies forth
The forms of things unknown, the poet’s pen
Turns them to shapes and gives to airy nothing
A local habitation and a name.
– William Shakespeare (from A Midsummer Night’s Dream)
Do we as writers need to embrace our business role a little more?
It’s the question I’ll ponder while giving to the airy nothings of my imagination a local habitation and a name.