Children's Author Tortured by Own Genius
From an article in America’s Best Newspaper Writing titled “Dr. Seuss: Wild Orchestrator of Plausible Nonsense for Kids” by Cynthia Gorney:
“He reads for distraction. He needs it. When he is at work, the names, the verse, the story line, the colors, the shapes and sizes of his extraordinary characters all press upon him” (170).
Wow! This line really drew me in as a reader. By telling us this, and especially by the way she worded it, she makes it clear that Dr. Seuss is not only a genius, but a prisoner. He is tortured by his own imagination. Because he is creating a completely different world that is inhabited by different animals than we are used to he is, in a way, God-like. But it’s too much for a human to handle. Instead of saying what I said, though, she instead tells us that his pleasure reading is a distraction, an escape from his world of Wockets and Zairs. She lets the reader draw the conclusions that he is a genius that is maybe too smart for his own good. THIS is good writing. In high school the features were my favorite articles to write (next to opinions because let’s face it, I have a lot of those) because there is so much more room for your personality to shine through. The way Gorney words her sentences and constructs this article we can see that she is a skilled wordsmith without her looking showy.
What else did you like about her writing? Or not like?