‘I’m going to die out here he thought, I’m going to die trying to save this beast in front of my boy.’
An extract from Kudos, the final novel in Rachel Cusk’s trilogy, following Outline and Transit.
Who Killed Tolstoy?
‘I walked along the birch-lined alleys of Yasnaya Polyana, looking for clues. Snakes were swimming in the pond, making a rippling pattern. Everything here was a museum.’
Danny Denton | Notes on Craft
‘My tuppence on craft is this: as a writer, you must give your reader space to experience the world of your story (whatever form it takes)’
'I never worried about my flat catching fire before Poppy came along.' Caroline Criado-Perez on her pet Poppy.
It’s Only Skin
‘I knew what it was to be an object of desire, and to be submissive.’ Lily Dunn on being a painter's model as a girl.
The Agony and Ecstasy of Escape
Will Boast on how Bernini's Apollo and Daphne helped him write his latest novel
The Taxidermy Museum
‘Even dying is an attempt to approach life. That’s how I perceive taxidermy.’
‘There is something about the presence of coyotes that makes any place feel wilder than it is.’
‘More than once the new dog was aggressive, a stab of fire, but I did not tell the grown-ups. I feared they would take him away.’
The Farmer’s Son
‘I’m twenty-nine and I’ve never delivered a calf myself. But that’s all about to change’
The Falconer and the Hawks
‘A fine balance of precision and coiled unsparing instinct, all contained within a gossamer skein of feather, skin, muscle and bone.’
‘I didn’t start my journal with the idea of recording my progress toward the ultimate truth.’
Kent Will Tear Us Apart
All the Devils Are Here was cursed with the status of a cult classic. It’s a book that people who’ve read it, especially writers, can never forget.
Our Lady of Mercy
‘I was engaged in a battle of politeness, those kindly – but ferocious – skirmishes that are so common in our country.’
‘Didn’t we remember lyrics fine before we had the internet in our pockets?’ Danny Denton on the lost art of sing-songing.
Best Book of 1996: The Lost Lunar Baedeker
‘Mina Loy has been a preferred voice in my head, echoing with a signature delirious chant as a kind of primordial poetry mother.’
Writing While Worried
‘Just as it can spur me on, worry is adept at stifling and silencing.’
The Martians Claim Canada
‘Mushrooms have long memories. Some of them are thousands of years old. However, they are not always very talkative.’
The Blue Clerk
‘Now you are sounding like me, the clerk says. I am you, the author says.’
What is it that hurts?
‘Our visibility and our affirmation as a people is established through our language.’
The Canada Pictures
‘In the year leading up to this I started collecting objects that, in some way, evoked a sense of Canadianness in me.’
Écrire Avec Facultés Affaiblies
Comme il a grandi, j’ai pensé, puis j’ai passé la débarbouillette sous l’eau tiède du lavabo de la salle de bain.
Political resistance, poetry, self-revelation all spring from that provocative, impish drive to burst free from external constraints.
After Ann Lauterbach
‘The piano eyes me / from its corner – / colluding with the past’
‘I am not now who or what I was when I wrote this. I change as you read. I am changing now.’ New fiction from Robert Coover.
Assuming the Habits of the Day and Night
‘my every day is a being in of being / a mixity of worlds’
‘That supremacist is the idea, in those brothers and sisters of mine, of shyness (which no one understands) being an encumbrance that they should purge as they try to find in their interaction with the world a perfect mixture of disdain, meekness and expansiveness.’
‘Did she process my gentle hand in the same way as the objectifying touch of the men before me? Did she know the difference?’
Brian Dillon on the Prozac craze of the 90s, and his experience taking the infamous antidepressant.