A hangover aside from researching this essay on Daphne du Maurier: In one of her letters to her publisher, she was updating him on how her novel was going and said something like, “Creation boils within me.” She was not a grandiose kind of writer, and in the context of the letter it reads like she was just truly taken up with the exhilaration of what she was working on. It’s become one of my favorite things to say lately when I’m working on the book and padding around the house in my yoga pants or standing at the sink eating peanut butter from the jar and hoping the UPS dude can’t see me when he comes onto the porch to drop off a package. Creation Boils Within Me. Creation A Watched Pot Within Me. Creation At A Low Simmer Within Me. Etc. etc.
She walks in sneezes, like the blight.
Du Maurier called the house her “rat-filled ruin.” It wasn’t hyperbole. Rats, dozens of them, scuttled along the house’s floors at night. Bats flit in and out. It was freezing, too, even by the stoic standards of the time, and damp, with a hard, nipping cold rising off the sea. Scarves and hats were routinely worn indoors.
— I wrote about Daphne du Maurier and the Manderley estate she bought with her Rebecca $ at the new Gawker Review of Books! It was so much fun to write—I’ve loved du Maurier forever and wanted to write about her life since coming across this picture of her last year.
And my personal favourite…
I am stealing ALL of these
Took the dog to the vet this morning and somewhere during the visit began to take obscure satisfaction when the techs (who were great) would say in a knowledgeable, off-hand way things like “she’s a bleeder” and “she always has a reaction to shots” and “wow, it’s been a few months since we saw you!” It’s like having custodianship of a 7-pound hemophiliac Russian princeling.
I met my friend Lori tonight to see the new Duran Duran concert film directed by David Lynch (one night, one showing only!). She told me that she kept getting confused this week and telling people that it was directed by Werner Herzog, which is, it turns out, really easy to construct. “Here is master vocalist Simon LeBon” and “Duranies come from near and far” and “like a volf, we are hungry.” Also, at one point, Werner’d maybe track down bitter Andy Taylor at his village pub and make him listen to anecdotes about Klaus Kinski.
It was a lot of fun. There were only 20 or so people in the theater besides us, and Lori pointed out how like junior high it felt—to be slouched in a seat eating Junior Mints with one of your friends, watching Duran Duran videos, while the rest of the world’s off doing something else.