Posts Tagged ‘writing’

teaching vs writing

Saturday, September 13th, 2014

Teaching and writing go together like cake and icing, like chips and vinegar, like cheese and jam. We writers are drawn to teaching for good reasons: we get to talk about books all day, we get nice long holidays, we get the sort of autonomy and independence we awkward types love. In my workroom [...]

and then and then and then

Saturday, August 23rd, 2014

When Haruki Murakami sat down to write The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, he didn’t have a plan. When Stephen King wrote The Stand, he didn’t have a plan. When Margaret Atwood wrote The Handmaid’s Tale, she didn’t know what was going to happen or how it would end.
And when I sit down to write my [...]

Three things

Sunday, July 6th, 2014

The talented, charming, and persistent(!) Priya Sharma has tagged me in a game of blog hop called “Three things I don’t write, and three things I do.” Priya’s stories are regularly published in prestigious markets and are then invariably snapped up and published in the year’s best collections. I’m lucky enough to be sharing a [...]

then we set ourselves on fire

Sunday, June 8th, 2014

I live in a city where it is considered somewhat normal (even, in some quarters, desirable) to write angry confessional poetry and ‘perform’ it to friends and strangers in pubs. The performance usually consists of attempting to impose some kind of rhythm and meaning on a formless string of half-sentences by way of reading [...]

silence: broken

Tuesday, June 3rd, 2014

The man who lives in the apartment upstairs has a wooden leg. His dog has a little cart with wheels, strapped onto his body where his hind legs used to be. In the early mornings, the man and the dog chase each other over the hard wooden floors, and fight over a bone.
I’m [...]

how late it was

Sunday, February 23rd, 2014

I’ve never grown out of wanting to stay up late. There’s a glamour to the night time, a certain electricity in the air. When I was younger, I liked to stay up all night with my friends. I was always the last to go home or go to sleep. Now, all my friends have [...]

california

Sunday, December 15th, 2013

When I think of California, I picture a family sitting around a table in a riotous garden. Big avocados and glasses of cold white wine. I think of a friend, a writer, who lives there now. I think of the sea, and mountains, and the sound of car doors slamming. The sun always shining. [...]

there’s a name for this

Monday, July 22nd, 2013

there must be a name for this feeling you get in the middle of a novel when actually you HATE your novel and you want to throw it out of the window and start over and your friends have to talk you down and talk you up and you read blogs that say WHATEVER YOU [...]

from the bottom of a very deep hole

Sunday, July 14th, 2013

It’s highly possible that by the time I get to the end of the first draft of this novel, all that I’ll have to show for it is the first draft of a novel. My home will be ripped apart by feral mice (they’ll become feral after eating the thyroid medication I’ve carelessly left lying [...]

something is squeaking

Tuesday, June 25th, 2013

Something is squeaking in my room, and no no NO it is not my small bewhiskered friend Alphonse, he of the beret and the Gauloise and the stinky cheese. (I upset him by stuffing all the mouse holes with wire wool and peppermint-soaked cotton, and haven’t seen him since.) Maybe there is always something squeaking [...]