Is a picture really worth a thousand words? What thousand words? A thousand words from a lunatic, or a thousand words from Nietzsche? Actually, Nietzsche was a lunatic, but you see my point. What about a thousand words from a rambler vs. 500 words from Mark Twain? He could say the same thing quicker and with more force than almost any other writer. One thousand words from Ginsberg are not even worth one from Wilde. It's wild to declare the equivalency of any picture with any army of 1, 000 words. Words from a writer like Wordsworth make you appreciate what words are worth.
Susan Griffin describes it as a time when "there is no intrinsic authority to my words." "I... clean off my desk. I make telephone calls. I know I am avoiding the typewriter. I know that in my mind, where there might be words, there is simply a blankness. I may try to write and then my words bore me." But when the time is right, the waiting will have been worth it. "Because each time I write, each time the authentic words break through, I am changed. The older order that I was collapses and dies. I lose control. I do not know exactly what words will appear on the page. I follow language. I follow the sound of the words, and I am surprised and transformed by what I record." Excerpt from "Thoughts on Writing: A Diary, " in The Writer on her Work.