Yet how hard to be dignified with the man from whom comes one's daily bread
The wrinkles in his face resemble the pages of a notebook, the record of living in the camp, not far from a homeland that keeps becoming more distant, a notebook that speaks of the difficulty of finding one's daily bread
, the difficulty of working, the difficulty of being a refugee, and that of being born in the camp and being buried in the camp.
Composed entirely of brief vignettes strung together into a narrative whole--told in present tense, a technique that emphasizes the feel of the moment--Writing for Love and/or Money recounts the practical difficulties of writing to earn one's daily bread
, whether as a journalist, a playwright, or a script writer, and the colorful ups and downs of a life boldly lived.
They serve as a means of raising a series of questions fundamental to the life of a twentieth-century author: what it means to be a writer in an environment hostile to nonconformism; what constitutes the past and how to present it truthfully in literary form; how to keep one's art alive despite the hardships of having to earn one's daily bread
; how to live in one place aware it is colored by the experiences of living in another; to what extent childhood in an emotionally frigid family can shape one's adult thinking; how a woman can find a different purpose in life from the one to which her mother was doomed; what prompts a woman to become subordinate in her relationship with a man; how one person's biography can refract another person's life.