Episode 172 :: Dinty Moore :: The Mindful Writer: Noble Truths of the Writing Life

| June 9, 2013 | 1 Comment


Dinty Moore

Author and teacher Dinty Moore speaks with us about his new book, The Mindful Writer: Noble Truths of the Writing Life.

Our practice can manifest in many ways, really in everything we do. But that is a decision, a choice we have, and sometimes we don’t take it, instead continuing on automatic pilot. So what happens when we apply that decision, moment by moment, to being mindful to our more cerebral endeavors? It’s one thing to be fully present in walking meditation, sweeping the floor, or brushing our teeth, but what about something like writing? And how might our foundational understanding of the Four Noble Truths of Buddhism impact what we write, and our experiences in putting a book together?

Dinty W. Moore is author of numerous books, including The Mindful Writer: Noble Truths of the Writing Life, The Accidental Buddhist: Mindfulness, Enlightenment, and Sitting Still, Crafting the Personal Essay: A Guide for Writing and Publishing Creative Nonfiction, and the memoir Between Panic & Desire, winner of the Grub Street Nonfiction Book Prize. Having failed as a zookeeper, modern dancer, Greenwich Village waiter, filmmaker, and wire service journalist, he now writes essays and stories. He has been published in The Southern Review, The Georgia Review, Harpers, The New York Times Sunday Magazine, The Philadelphia Inquirer Magazine, Gettysburg Review, Utne Reader, and Crazyhorse, among numerous other venues. Dinty lives in Athens, Ohio, where he grows his own heirloom tomatoes and edible dandelions, and teaches a crop of brilliant undergraduate and stunningly talented graduate students as director of Ohio University’s BA, MA, and PhD in Creative Writing program.

So, sit back, relax, and have a nice Chocolate Chai. Tea scientists, snap to, I’ve not seen this combination yet.


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Music for This Episode Courtesy of Rodrigo Rodriguez

The music heard in the middle of the podcast is from Rodrigo Rodriguez. The track used in this episode is “Kumoi Jishi” from his CD, The Road to Hasekura Tsunenaga: Music for Shakuhachi Flute.

Category: The Secular Buddhist Podcast

Ted Meissner

About the Author ()

Ted Meissner is the host of the podcast Present Moment: Mindfulness Practice and Science. He has been a meditator since the early 90’s, has been interviewed for Books and Ideas, Mindful Lives, and The Whole Leader podcasts, spoken about mindfulness with various groups including Harvard Humanist Hub, and has written for Elephant Journal and The International Journal of Whole Person Care. He is the Executive Director of the Secular Buddhist Association, host of the SBA’s official podcast The Secular Buddhist, and is on the Advisory Board for the Spiritual Naturalist Society. Ted’s background is in the Zen and Theravada traditions, he is a regular speaker on interfaith panel discussions, and is interested in examining the evolution of contemplative practice in contemporary culture. Ted teaches Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) at the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care & Society, where he is the Manager of Online Programming and Community Development.

Comments (1)

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  1. David Chou David Chou says:

    I’m a writer too and was really looking forward to this interview. However, I have a concern that wasn’t addressed, so let me ask here:

    As a writer (under pseudonyms) of romances and thrillers I spend all my time imagining the most outrageous scenarios to entertain my readers. I have to wonder about the “karmic health” of such habits, however: does not frequent exposure of the mind to fantasy color it somehow for the worse??

    There are genre expectations that must be satisfied, and I’ve always been ambivalent about catering to the worst of human desires while toying with the noblest of human hopes. Is there a writer who struggles with such concerns??

    I also work as an SEO copywriter — meaning I pollute the internet with outright lies. Any other writers finding the Buddhist path a challenge for similar reasons???

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