Fiction is like a spider’s web, attached ever so lightly perhaps, but still attached to life at all four corners. – Virginia Woolf, A Room of One’s Own, Chapter 3 (1929)
Fiction, like a delicate spider’s web is so light and impalpable, but it yet needs to anchor to reality to be perceptible. Some webs seem to float in air by itself, and it is barely possible to perceive where exactly the web is attached to when the fiction stands very close to life. The existence of the web becomes obvious when it floats gently in the air, its attachments clearer when we attempt to trace the points where the fragile silks meet.
To be able to create a web requires the craftsmanship of a spider. The works of writers like Virginia Woolf make us believe that their webs hang in mid-air. The webs of expression created by Virginia prove to have existence without materialistic attachment. Her effortless prose conveys the deeper meanings of life, even without the very mention of anything human. She draws images in air, and talks in metaphors. Her narrative is highly symbolic and imaginative, written chiefly in verse. Her command in language and futuristic feminist concepts makes her my favorite writer of the twentieth century.
This analysis of Virginia Woolf’s quote was written for Terra Curanda in March 2014.