All items: Marcel Proust

An author’s ideas are essential to the writing process, but how and why do they arise? Katharine Grant considers various possibilities.
I also aspire to read a play a day, which is unrealistic if you are a commissioned writer with a Netflix subscription, and a poem a day, which is more achievable.
Style and form are all find and dandy, I'm sure they do wonders for my poor old brain, but sometimes I hanker after a good story. Luckily there are plenty of them about, and some happen to be beautifully written too.
Although writers are often asked about their favourite tools – from pens to laptops – the chairs on which they sit to write are seldom mentioned. Alex Games wonders why so little attention has been paid to this crucial piece of furniture.
The writer in me seemed to want to go one step further and turn this response into words, readable, informative, sometimes scholarly words; something that might last.
As a writer of historical fiction, Morgen Witzel has become adept at conveying a feeling of what the past was like through its sensual qualities, of which smell is the most powerfully visceral. As he argues here, there’s nothing like it for creating a psychological mood — or for summoning up unconscious memories.
As a child, even after many re-readings, I was oblivious of any heavy-handed religious symbolism, I simply grew to love Lewis's alternative world.
When advances dwindle and rejections become legion - each more hurtful than the last - I remember McCullers, Proust, Balzac and the many others who fought the good fight.
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