on archives

More from Philip Gerard’s The Art of Creative Research, this time on archives:

“The archives are everywhere around us: not just in libraries and special collections, but in out-of-the-way places, the stories people tell, memories, old shoe boxes full of photographs, letters and diaries of loved ones and strangers, and a thousand other repositories. Those archives are full of both mysteries and the keys to unlocking those mysteries, revelations that shock and delight, insight that enlarges the writer’s understanding of his or her personal story and challenges the writer to push craft to the limit in service of complex truth and beauty.” (57-8).

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