Tuesday, January 03, 2006

On reading

From Barbara Pym's No Fond Return of Love:

"All this reading," said Miss Lord. "I used to like a book occasionally, but I don't get time for it now."
"I took my degree in English Literature," said Dulcie, almost to herself.
"But what does it lead to, Miss Mainwaring?"

"I've written a couple of articles," [Viola] lied, "and I'm thinking of writing a novel. It seems more worthwhile than doing research," she added provocatively.
"Yes, perhaps it may be," Dulcie agreed. "It's creating something of one's own, certainly, even if it isn't any good. I'm sure," she added hastily, "that yours will be awfully good. I should think you have the gift for observing people and getting them down on paper."
"Oh, it won't be that kind of novel," said Viola distastefully.

Moyer Bell has reissued nearly all Pym's novels, of which this is my fourth. I'll write more about her later in the week.

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