He’s always been one of my favorite authors and I never enjoyed him more than when I jumped into the deep waters of his journals.  In them, I found this short passage, which he calls his “Prayer for Writers.”

“Oh source of my imagination, teach me to extend toward all living beings that fascinated, unsentimental, loving and all-pardoning interest which I feel for the characters I create. May I become identified with all humanity, as I identify myself with these imaginary persons. May my art become my life, and my life my art. Deliver me from snootiness, and from the Pulitzer Prize. Teach me to practice true anonymity. Help me to forgive my agents and my publishers. Make me attentive to my critics and patient with my fans. For yours is the conception and the execution. Amen”

In his entry for that day, he continues on:  “Stop trying to use the conscious will.  Free the Ego from its attachments with expert gentleness, like a surgeon.  Remember that the strangulated Ego is everything you hate in others–so how can you hate anybody?  You are only hating yourself.  The surgeon doesn’t hate the hernia:  he simply reduces it…  Forgive yourself and then operate.”