Thursday, 13 December 2007

Journal of a novel

Steinbeck's Journal of a Novel was a book I greatly enjoyed whilst struggling with my own book. Much resonates, including this paragraph. My wife is particularly glad that the book is over!

When I work on a book to this extent and with this concentration, it means that I am living another life. As it goes along, increasingly I give to the second life more than to the first. Then I must be very hard to live with in real life, not because I am mean but because I am vague. Things ordinarily done are forgotten. My expression must be one of fogged stupidity - my responses slow. It is during this time that a woman first gets restless, then uneasy, then angry. I don't know what to do about it but there it is. And a book like this goes on for such a long time. You can read it in a few days but it takes years to think and write. It must be a great chore to live with if you are not writing it.