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Rewriting is Redemption: Blue Highways’ Rich and Lonely Roads
But I really hope it goes beyond that, because the creative process has so many ramifications across many disciplines. That dedication, according to Heat-Moon, is a vital component to finishing a project. Another element of the publishing process Heat-Moon examines in his new book is rejection. You must fall back on believing in what you do. The writer simply needs to remember some things that we knew and felt when we were five or six. And, it seems to be a damned jolly term. What does Heat-Moon hope will be the legacy of his work?
Writing BLUE HIGHWAYS: The Story of How a Book Happened
BLUE HIGHWAYS REVISITED, The Book and The Exhibition
The winter of began the day before Thanksgiving and lasted nearly to the first week of spring. Even in the middle latitudes where I lived in central Missouri, snow falling on the second of December took months to turn, glacially, into sooty heaps melting just enough to change into a dirty ice that remained until a week beyond the vernal equinox, and only then did the remnants soften into gray honeycombs before at last turning to slush promising the end of the long and hard season. At age thirty-eight, overdegreed and undereducated, living a life that could be represented by the twenty-seventh letter of the alphabet, I was iced in by failed expectations and a cold logic suggesting I should expect no interior spring thaw. Wearied of waiting for some sort of change to the obstacles I saw before me, I decided to try the ice-ax method of hacking and hewing a way through debilities of stasis and into movement that might find a path out of the frozen fields of Missouri. If you've read the opening chapter of Blue Highways , you know what happened next: On the first day of spring I boarded my small three-year-old Ford van, called Ghost Dancing, and with its dicey water pump lit out for some other, and warmer, territory that could be termed Any Damn Place Else. That act may be the most American undertaking I've ever tried: an embracing of our storied, historied, ineluctable, continuing, kit-bag-over-your-shoulder solution to finding a new life or, if not quite another existence, at least something offering differences. Now, a third of a century later, this little book is not about the ensuing three-month journey.
Driving 14, desperation-fuelled miles in gave William Least Heat-Moon the story for the essential American travelogue. John Lingan is writing a nonfiction book about the last honky-tonk in the Virginias, to be Man grows restless. Man falls out of love with his job, his home, and his city. So off he goes, 14,odd miles on non-interstates, the roads Rand McNally once rendered in blue.