Been doing things lately like ironing every single summer dress that has been shoved in a bag for the past two months
Writing up a storm right now, also. Third person is a trip. I keep finishing something and then saying to myself, “Am I allowed to write like this?” I feel like I’m judging every character, which I am! But I have to. I have to have an opinion about all these people, or why bother writing? I find myself pulling back sometimes because it feels too personal, but I know when I let loose I’m at my best.
I’ve been accidentally reading all these books about the Holocaust, which has been helpful to my work even though my book is set in 2010. It’s just good to think about it in terms of mindset. I’ll say no more about that, only that last night I dubbed my novel-in-progress, “A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Jewishness.” A joke, but not. Also lately when people ask me what I’m writing about I say, “Apathetic Jews.”
After Will Leitch’s book party last night (I think it’s like his fiftieth book or something, and his youthful enthusiasm never wanes. He’s amazing), which featured a wide array of brooding bloggers (one of those “but if you are all here, then who is running the internet?” parties), and candy canes shaped like baseballs (one of which Goodwillie meticulously sucked for 45 minutes and it never shrank), I had dinner with Kate and Brendan and Patricia over at Patricia’s loft. We ate a delicious meal and spent a considerable amount of time trying to come up with a name for Patricia’s house in Nova Scotia, most of the suggestions for which were dirty and involved slang for the word “vagina.” (Well, mine did anyway.)
But then we got to talking Jews, and Kate told me that I should read the Old Testament because so many of the people in it are super messed up and even god is no sweetheart. I reminisced about how I grew up mesmerized by the Anne Frank story but by the time I actually made it to the Anne Frank house in Amsterdam during my junior year abroad I was still so stoned from the night (day, weeek, month) before I remember feeling very little.
I do wonder what I would feel now.
I will judge others and myself from afar and up close in this book.