Thursday, January 23, 2014
on writing oftener
In 1867 Samuel Clemens writes to his family:
I know I ought to write oftener... & more fully, but I can not overcome my repugnance to telling what I am doing or what I expect to do or propose to do. Then, what have I left to write about? Manifestly nothing."
And he writes again, in 1868:
"I have got a thousand things to do, & am not doing any of them. I feel perfectly savage."
(From Mark Twain's Letters Volume 2, p.49 and p.152, respectively.)
And so it is with me. Life has been overfull lately and having already lived it, I don't particularly want to talk about any of it. I will return to discuss books soon, however, as always. Though I will just say that I am three volumes in to Mark Twain's Letters. And they make me deeply happy. I think Valentine's Day will be a perfect time for a discussion about Clemens's courtship letters to his future wife. He was minding his own business, living the life of a vagabond journalist and confirmed bachelor, then he met a certain young woman, the woman in fact, and fell over a veritable cliff of love. Blindsided. A total coup de foudre. He wrote her exceptional love letters for months and months, and then they married. Most satisfactory, first in life and now on paper! More to follow.
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