Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Re: [johnbarth] Edmund White on Barth

Expand Messages
  • Mal McCormack
    Along these lines, it must be about, oh...  15 or 16 years ago I thought I detected in Barth s recenter writings a certain fatigue and loss of vigour, along
    Message 1 of 3 , Feb 11, 2012
    • 0 Attachment
      Along these lines, it must be about, oh...  15 or 16 years ago I thought I detected in Barth's recenter writings a certain fatigue and loss of vigour, along with increasing gloominess generally on the human condition and particularly on the inevitabilty of personal mortality.  Not nearly as bad as we see in "The Development" for instance, but a somewhat unhealthy fixation on "The Destroyer Of Delights" etc. nonetheless.

      Impertinently, I wrote (paper, envelope, stamp!) to him gently commiserating on the diverse horrors of ageing (aging - for you North Americans) and hoped he was not in too much discomfort, and, yeah, Life Is A Bitch but what can one do about it?

      Two months later I received a very breezy and good-humoured reply that: It's all just fiction, characters have little if anything to do with their authors (in his case anyway) and since I appeared to be passably well acquainted with his work he was a little surprised I hadn't twigged to that by now.

      So, I think we can reasonably expect more to come, others things being equal.

      Mal.

      From: Mark Brawner <mark.brawner@...>
      To: johnbarth@yahoogroups.com
      Sent: Sunday, 12 February 2012 4:30 AM
      Subject: [johnbarth] Edmund White on Barth

       
      "...John Barth, now 81, in the literary magazine Granta ...says that
      he believes the well of his inspiration has run dry. It's an attitude
      that cuts little ice with novelist Edmund White, 72.

      "I've known Barth all my life," he says. "He's very at ease
      financially and always sits at the same three desks. He should get rid
      of desks and write in a train and give away all his money. Then he'd
      be forced to write for money the way the rest of us do and he'd find
      inspiration right away."

      Heh...

      http://www.guardian.co.uk/artanddesign/2012/feb/10/yoko-ono-leonardo-cohen-artists?newsfeed=true


    • Mark Brawner
      ... --Severer of Societies! Desolator of-- awright, sorry...love that stuff... Impertinently, I wrote (paper, envelope, stamp!) to him gently ... (Hey Mal !)
      Message 2 of 3 , Feb 12, 2012
      • 0 Attachment
        On Sat, Feb 11, 2012 at 10:13 PM, Mal McCormack <malmc_y@...> wrote:


        Along these lines, it must be about, oh...  15 or 16 years ago I thought I detected in Barth's recenter writings a certain fatigue and loss of vigour, along with increasing gloominess generally on the human condition and particularly on the inevitabilty of personal mortality.  Not nearly as bad as we see in "The Development" for instance, but a somewhat unhealthy fixation on "The Destroyer Of Delights" etc. nonetheless.

        --Severer of Societies! Desolator of-- awright, sorry...love that stuff...

        Impertinently, I wrote (paper, envelope, stamp!) to him gently commiserating on the diverse horrors of ageing (aging - for you North Americans) and hoped he was not in too much discomfort, and, yeah, Life Is A Bitch but what can one do about it?

        (Hey Mal !)

        I, too, comrades, contacted him at the time (this was 1996/7-ish -- the _On With the Story_ unspecifed-terminality frame-story moment). I wrote, basically, an "I love you man, and your latest!" deal, which was received cordially enough, but was then followed, alas, by an ill-conceived follow-up which ended most awkwardly. (I have a history of this cringe-inducing hero-meeting pattern: some in the flesh -- mostly musicians.  I'm an idiot.)
         
        So, I think we can reasonably expect more to come, others things being equal.

        Mal.

        Yeah, he pretty much said as much in one of those pieces I linked to, I think.  Go Jack!

        Alrighty then,
        Mark
      Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.