Mary O’Donoghue | Notes on Craft
In this new series, we give authors a space to discuss the way they write – from technique and style to inspirations that inform their craft.
‘It is important to establish, before this begins, that I never thought of myself as an animal person.’
‘There was no inquiry and no report either because we all have new names now.’
The Fjord of Eternity
‘Insurance fraud of the sort Trisha investigated involved perps who were dentists with erectile malfunction, men who were scarfing anti-depressants and hit a wall.’
‘You can decide, whenever you like, that what you feel is no kind of love.’
Among the Citizen Soldiers
Karan Mahajan visits Lexington, Virginia – a centre of the Confederary – in the wake of the far-right rally in Charlottesville.
‘People think they’re destroying, but it’s hard work, nearly impossible; building is easy, illusory but easy.’
If Mother’s Happy
‘Towards the end of my pregnancy, like many women, my emotions were taut, stretched thin like the skin round my middle.’
The Fashion of Kathy Acker
An extract from Chris Kraus’s new biography, After Kathy Acker.
Erika Krouse on her work as a private investigator. ‘An escort service was providing prostitutes for football recruits, directly solicited by the university.’
Hallelujah! A Brief History of Bombing People
Ben Mauk on the West’s longstanding love of missiles, drones, bombs and nukes.
Nicole Krauss In Conversation
‘The ancient stories we tell, as beautiful as they may be, also serve to shape our conventions about who we think we are or should be’
Possessed | State of Mind
‘I am neither fully awake nor entirely asleep. In fact, I wonder if I am even alive.’
Catherine Lacey | Five Things Right Now
Catherine Lacey shares five things she’s reading, watching and thinking about right now.
The Alarming Palsy of James Orr
‘As it was, this gave the impression of two different faces, two different people, welded savagely together.’
Books Do Furnish a Room
‘The shelves say something about the person who has stocked them; they say much.’
Threshold | State of Mind
‘What we’re about to see is greater than the thing you’re running from.’
‘Museums are not solely concerned with objects and our collective past, but also with ideas; notions of what the world is, or should be.’
White | State of Mind
‘I was told that she was a girl, with a face as white as a crescent-moon rice cake.’ New writing from Han Kang, translated from the Korean by Deborah Smith.
From the Left Bank of the Flu
‘The big road looked to me like a river, the cars rushing by as if carried along on its current.’
My Heart Hemmed In
‘I stagger from the shock. I feel the corners of my mouth turning down. My jaw begins to tremble. Yes, yes, yes, I say to myself, get ahold of yourself.’
‘For my mother and father, the past and present had both become foreign countries.’
‘One piece of luck: I didn’t explain to the pianist how to play the piano.’ Translated from the French by Sophie Lewis.
Daniel Magariel | Five Things Right Now
Daniel Magariel shares five things he’s reading, watching and thinking about right now.
The Death of Margaret Roe
The 2017 Commonwealth Short Story Prize winner from the Pacific. ‘Every person has their own secrets, but Margaret Roe had Havilah Brown’s.’
‘Daddy always said our apples were blessed because the order lived beside us. He liked to gift crates of Egremont Russets, the sweetest of all his fruit, to the sisters.’
‘Her husband who is going to betray her is standing inside the city of Roma.’ Dreams of infidelity from Deborah Levy.
‘I wonder if the only way to grasp what is terrifying and unimaginable for those of us who haven’t experienced it is to feel around the contours of inescapability, the boundary of its negative space.’
‘And each time I hit the tarmac I had this terrible feeling that the trip I’d just taken had never even happened, that I’d spent hundreds for a memory I could barely recall.’
‘Things he dreamt began to show up in the bushes, the plastic figurine from a parachute firework, the small dull rusted circular saw blade he thought of as a throwing star, and he pocketed those things.’
‘Long before terrorism became fashionable in the West and commonplace in the East, there was a bombing at the Sovereign Center in Delhi.’
‘Frank Laganà stood on the cliff suited in black, as straight as an exclamation point, poised to leap to his death once again.’