I feel like Salinger is an apartment writer. I don’t know exactly what I mean by that beyond the fact that he is someone who grew up in an apartment, and for whom apartments were a huge component of his work. I tried to get Edmund White to agree that Proust also fell into this category but he didn’t quite go there. It is my sense that apartment life—a character’s apartment life, in the many apartments that are strewn across the stories and even Catcher in the Rye—informs the writing that he’s doing. I myself grew up in an apartment in a big old building in uptown Manhattan. I didn’t think it would be informative—everything you need to know about Salinger’s apartment you can read about in his fiction. But I thought that there would be some sort of catharsis in seeing it, and there was. Turns out the news about the apartment was more about the view than about the space.
Just before I’d moved to New York, two historic events had occurred: The birth control pill had been invented, and the first Julia Child cookbook was published. As a result, everyone was having sex, and when the sex was over, you cooked something.
Nora Ephron - Serial Monogamy
Nora Ephron died two years ago today. This is my favorite quip.
Above all, be the heroine of your life, not the victim.
My wardrobe doesn’t fool anyone I know personally or whose opinion I care about, nor do I wish it did. Like most people who write for a living, the sort of status I crave depends upon the respect of roughly 100 people, most of whom live within a mile of me and are just as unwealthy as I am.
Five months ago I published a short book called “Boom.” Commercially it was a bust. No news in that: Most books lose money and are quickly forgotten by all but their wounded authors.
But this experience wasn’t just a predictable blow to what’s left of my self-esteem. It’s also a cautionary farce about the new media and technology we’re so often told is the bright shining future for writers and readers.
A great but depressing piece.