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[EXCLUSIVE] Artist’s Task: What Sherwood Anderson Taught William Faulkner About Writing?

By Ralphy Bonn Sim on Feb 16, 2017 04:12 AM EST

There was a quote by Sherwood Anderson saying "Whether you succeed or not is irrelevant, there is no such thing," it was a letter of advice being an artist in 1923. Sherwood Anderson was recognized to be a great artist by all means.

One time Sherwood Anderson met a young William Faulkner, who considered himself an apprentice of the late Anderson. William was educated by Anderson in every formal sense, without even very literate and taught him with compassions, as reported by NPR.

A decade later, William Faulkner remembered Sherwood Anderson as his important mentor in a beautiful 1953 piece "Sherwood Anderson: An Appreciation" which was originally published in Atlanta and later involved in William Faulkner's anthology "Essays, Speeches & Public Letters" under in his authentic title, "A Note on Sherwood Anderson."

William Faulkner reflects everything that Sherwood Anderson taught him on how to be a good writer. He learned that being a writer means first you have to remember what you are; a writer does not necessarily have to pay lip-service to any conventional American image.

William Faulkner quoted Sherwood Anderson in his own words to him as a young writer that a writer must believe in the value of purity and to believe more in any literature he will encounter, according to Brain Pickings. For William Faulkner, to believe was not just the value, but also the integrity and the necessity for fidelity. He added that lucky is the man whom the profession of an artist was elected and prefer to be faithful in it.

William Faulkner definitely kept his mentor's words to his heart and soul as he became as one of the great writers. By the time he won the Nobel Prize in Literature a century after meeting Sherwood Anderson, he expresses his gratitude for his mentor by a spectacular acceptance speech which he said: "the poet's, the writer's, duty is to help man endure by lifting his heart."

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TagsSherwood Anderson, William Faulkner, Writer, Nobel Prize in Literature

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