Editing as Rehab

Now The Woman in the Window has entered copy-editing, which is a little like entering rehab. She knows deep down that there’s something wrong with her, a set of outward behaviors that need to be changed for her to get back on track, and she’s hoping to work with someone, a professional, who can help… Continue reading Editing as Rehab

A book from far away

I’ve had the treat of just returning to Yuri Rytkheu’s novel A Dream in Polar Fog (trans. Ilona Yazhbin Chavasse; Archipelago Books, 2005) to teach it in my class this semester. If it were just an adventure story, one would not expect the book to have been published by a press with Archipelago’s literary credentials.… Continue reading A book from far away

Demise of glory

I remember now being inspired earlier in my writing of The Woman in the Window by the idea of glory’s demise. It was a fixation of Europeans following the Napoleonic Wars, and when I discovered it, I suddenly understood a lot of what was going then in literary circles, too. Then I think I forgot… Continue reading Demise of glory

Those 200 words

My publisher says they want 200 words to describe the book. This is what we’ll use to promote it, they say, so no pressure. Just make sure the words tell the story, and please don’t refer us to your preface or introduction because we might not have access to that (really?), and while you surely… Continue reading Those 200 words

Crossing Seven Silences (in two parts): 2

“The silences” suggests a limitation where there isn’t any, a purity somewhat like the absence of mixture I am loathe to credit. And so there are taboo silences, like when your sister marries a black man, and these are closely allied with the silences of prejudice and bigotry, as when your uncle comes out from… Continue reading Crossing Seven Silences (in two parts): 2

Crossing Seven Silences (in two parts): 1

I am tempted by phrases such as the silence of ignorance, and the silence of hatred, but ignorance is so very rarely silent, and hatred even less so. I am also tempted—let’s get these all out at the start—by the definite article, that “the” that would suggest these silences are the silences, the only ones… Continue reading Crossing Seven Silences (in two parts): 1