A Question of Balance: Artists and Writers

by Judith Pierce Rosenberg
Papier Mache Press, Wotsonville, CA, $19.95

When her kids were small, Alicia Ostriker wrote everywhere: sitting on a bus, on the living room sofa, in bed; even, she says, while she was driving. Mary Morris makes outer order before creatively approaching her inner disorder, undertaking a ritual, Bhuddist-style “cleaning of the temple” in order to disengage from the details of family life. Perri Klass drinks three cups of tea late at night, when the rest of her family is sleeping, to get started again. And Kate Braverman had to force herself not to burn the midnight oil at her typewriter—as a single parent she had to be up the next morning to take care of her child. Advises Rosellen Brown to any woman who is trying to parent and write simultaneously: make sure your life-partner knows how important your writing is to you. A bibliography is included with Rosenberg’s portraits of 25 artists and writers and their struggle to have it all.