Tuesday fragments

  • Now that he’s no longer being prosecuted for “denigrating Turkishness,” Orhan Pamuk just wants to get back to his writing. “I never had any trouble writing novels. I talked about this with my publisher when we were publishing Snow, which was my only explicitly political novel – but then nothing happened to it. The only time I had trouble, I had trouble because of interviews, madam.”
  • From David Orr’s consideration of Edgar Allan Poe & the Juke-Box: “‘Is Elizabeth Bishop overrated?’ ‘Perhaps a bit’ … presumably is what you say when you’ve gotten in the habit of thinking about poetry so much that you forget Bishop’s poems are less well known to many people than the lyrics to ‘Total Eclipse of the Heart.'”
  • As a young woman, Christine Brooke-Rose, who’s now 80, “wrote four accomplished but orthodox novels and seemed firmly established in London, but in 1964, after a dangerous illness, she ‘went experimental’ and published Out, after which she never again wrote a novel that didn’t offer, first to herself, then to her readers, some technical challenge, some breach of the usual unexamined ‘realism’ contract.”

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