Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Guest Post and Giveaway from Cassie Stocks, author of "Dance, Gladys, Dance"

Please join me in welcoming Cassie Stocks, author of Dance, Gladys, Dance (my review) to The Book Chick today! At the end of this post I will also be offering one lucky Canadian reader a chance to win a copy! Today Cassie writes about "The Art of Imperfect":

"When I was eight I was rummaging in an abandoned shed with an aunt on my grandfather’s farm. I can’t remember what we were looking for but as we went through the piles of shredded curtains and disintegrating piles of papers, I discovered a child’s enamel drinking cup. It was tiny, with a small curved handle and covered in polka dots of rust. I asked if I could have it.  My aunt looked at me as though I might be odder than was currently suspected.

I took the little abandoned cup home and put it on a shelf. It spoke to me. I knew it was beautiful in some way I could not describe. I’m the one that buys chipped antique vases for greatly reduced prices. I don’t find the beauty, the colours, or the form of an object to be diminished by a flaw. I once bought a china dog that was missing an ear because the tag said it was ‘Distressed’.

Some years ago, I discovered the concept of wabi-sabi. Leonard Koren in Wabi-Sabi: For Artists, Designers, Poets & Philosophers says “It is a beauty of things imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete. It is a beauty of things modest and humble. It is a beauty of things unconventional...”

As a writer and artist, wabi-sabi is something I need to pay attention to. There is always something beautiful about the characters I create, even those I find reprehensible or annoying. Adding some Wabi-sabi to ‘perfect’ people makes them human; the supermodel with a run in her nylons, or lipstick on her teeth, the wealthy stockbroker who is perfectly dressed except for his always drooping socks. Wabi-sabi people in real life are the eccentrics, the nerds, the dreamers, and the artists.

Wabi-sabi is a way to describe settings, to find the details that can make a place fascinating.  It isn’t always the new, the perfect, the shiny, or the glittering that adds substance.  The splintered, the peeling, the cracked, the ‘distressed’ can be beautiful and the imperfections can be what makes them exquisite.

Wabi-sabi is a way to love ourselves despite our flaws, wrinkles, cellulite, or whatever else we criticize in the mirror or in our lives. We are all wabi-sabi, gorgeous in our imperfections, gorgeous because of our imperfections. "

Thank-you so much to Cassie for stopping by to share with us! To enter to win a copy please fill out the form below (Canadian entrants only, please, giveaway ends July 24):

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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