Jan Hutchinson interviewed my mother for Fine Line, Number 4 (1988). The bit that jumped out at me today:
"When I start a class I urge students to write memories, remembered images. I'm not advocating that you have to write about real people and what really happened. I don't care about that, but I do care about the world that's created on the page. Tabling a lot of these details and experiences starts to show you the writer's process and your true subject matter. It's your source, your cupboard of supplies." (p. 46)
I can picture a cupboard and table, and words and images being pulled out of the cupboard and put on the table, sorted, measured, gathered, piled up. I love it: the cooking, tools and housekeeping aspects of writing seem so solid, reliable and powerful.
Side note: My mother had an actual cupboard not unlike the one in this photo I found. Very Australian. Hers is light wood and a little broader than this one. It has the glass double doors, the little drawers and assorted-size cabinet doors. It is in storage waiting for me; I wish I could ship it here.