Hemingway spoke a lot about that kind of daily struggle that every writer goes through. And that’s the grind: You’re never sure, as a writer, that you’ll really reach the peak. In the middle of a project, you never know that the journey will be worth it. I think when I was very young, I thought that when I got older, I’d reach a stage where I’d be confident in my writing—where I could just sit down every day and happily churn it out. That doesn’t happen. It never gets any better. You’re always unsure, and you’re never know whether your work will turn out how you want it to. — Vikram Chandra writes about the lessons learned by reading Hemingway.
Modern technology has finally developed a device that aims to aid all perpetually distracted writers – the cleverly titled Hemingwrite.
"Though I had read my novel aloud to myself many times and had read passages of it aloud to dozens of audiences on my book tour, hearing another person — a trained actor — reading my writing was a curious kick, a revelation. The words I was hearing were deeply familiar yet somehow refreshingly new." Our own Bill Morris writes about hearing his own audiobook for the first time.
The tragedy of Les, as well as his greatest virtue, lay in his absolutely uncompromising stance on art and life: the world of commerce and the world of Absolute Art is a Venn diagram with a very small overlap. — Janet Fitch remembers Les Plesko.
"I used to think that, until I began reading and writing in college, I had no literary education, but I was wrong. I had Natasha." Laura Van Den Berg On learning to be a writer… from a wolf.
We’ve published a fair number of pieces about the import of book covers. You may have read one of our US-UK book cover battles. Over at The Awl, Amanda Pickering takes a look at one of the stranger aspects of book design: the animals that appear on the covers of programming books.
Marie said, ‘Well, he’s really good at math.’
‘And he looks like Billy Baldwin. Have you noticed that?’
Nowadays, Alec is the hot Baldwin. But back then, in 1992, it was Billy.
‘The actor,’ I cried, ‘from Backdraft!’
She said, ‘Yeah, I know who Billy Baldwin is,’ and then I wept. — Recommended Reading: “Billy” by Sarah Braunstein.
Recently, a Czech linguist named Jakob Murian came up with an estimate of the number of languages your average European speaks. The study is complicated, however, by the question of how much you need to know to really understand a given language. At the LRB’s blog, Glen Newey asks: are you fluent when you can order a beer, or when you can translate Virgil? Pair with: Abigail Rasminsky on learning to speak German.
"The collaborative medium between prose and photography and poetry and photography deserves a more established home in the spectrum of the literary world." On House of Coates and collaborative art.
East Maxman has gone off on a c-nd-m in a pamphlet arguing everybody should support Wussia, for the nonce. ‘Time’ (a loose) mag says Don Josh Bathos of London England told P.E.N. innulluxuls that for the nonce writers shouldn’t be writing. Each collective choisi(pastparticiple,you recall,of choisir)without exception and—may I add—very naturally desires for the nonce nothing but Adolph’s Absolute Annihilation, Coûte Que Coûte (SIC). A man who once became worshipped of one thousand million pibbul by not falling into the ocean while simultaneously peeping through a periscope and sucking drugstore sandwiches is excoriated for,for the nonce,freedom of speech. — For those of you who’ve ever wondered to what extent e.e. cummings wrote prose the way he wrote poetry, there’s this letter to consider, published by The Paris Review Daily to commemorate the poet’s birthday. It’s addressed to Ezra Pound, and it features phrases including but not limited to “macarchibald maclapdog macleash.”