For me, writing is chasing a dream. It’s like the elusive unicorn, that magical experience only bestowed on the pure of heart with the best of intentions. It doesn’t always work that way. I’m not totally naive, but it works that way for me, even when the heady flow of words and ideas are tempered by the reality of markets, twittering, and Facebook pages.
Unicorns are a great symbol for the ideal of writing. One of my daughter’s friends used to collect unicorn figurines. Her room was full of them, but I never really got the appeal until I read Theodore Sturgeon’s short story, The Silken Swift. The squire’s sly, spoiled daughter intrigued me, and the author’s use of language mesmerized with its magical imagery and lyrical flow. The message of the story inspired. If you’ve never experienced it, it’s well worth a read. (I’ll put a link below).
The other story that swayed me to the beauty of unicorns was The Unicorn And The Lake, a children’s book by Marianna Mayer and illustrated by Michael Hague. It’s buried in religious symbolism, like C.S. Lewis’ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe–as a matter of fact, the two stories have a lot in common–but the beauty of the telling appealed to me.
Authors have long used unicorns as a symbol of purity. And sometimes writers forget, while we struggle with trying to find an agent, trying to increase our sells, and trying to become a “brand name,” that we also need to encourage and celebrate the pure joy of putting words on paper–writing just for the sake of expressing yourself.