Category Archives: Writing

Posts about writing

Irène Némirovsky’s Suite Française – a magnificent read

If you haven’t heard of Irène Némirovsky, then I strongly recommend her writing. Suite Française is definitely a masterpiece. For once, the journalists’ praise added to the front and back cover is so apt. I have not read such a … Continue reading

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Return to a certain kind of roots: darkness

Once again I’ve been quiet for the past few weeks. Excellent reason. A scintillating writers’ course at Moniack Mhor, near Inverness, in northern Scotland, where I met a superb group of inspiring writers in a wonderful moorland atmosphere, away from … Continue reading

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Translating places

I had not seen Alan for many years. I could remember the last time we met, in ominous circumstances, immediately before the Balkan wars. Eva and I had booked a holiday in the then Yugoslav Republic of Croatia, and though … Continue reading

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МЕСТО ВСТРЕЧН ИЗМЕНИТЪ НЕЛЪЗЯ

Currently reading Arkadi & Georgi Vainer’s МЕСТО ВСТРЕЧН ИЗМЕНИТЪ НЕЛЪЗЯ Mesto vstrechi izmenit nelzya (Meeting place should not be changed) in French translation (translated as 38, rue Petrovka). This is a crime story set in Moscow soon after the end … Continue reading

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Le Transsibérien: fire in every face

I was fascinated by Blaise Cendrars and his long prose poem “La Prose du Transsibérien et de la Petite Jehanne de France” when I first heard it ‘performed’ in the Club des Poètes in Paris in 1967. The poem was … Continue reading

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If it was just a job, you would die

Occasionally, just occasionally, when you’re reading, a phrase jumps out at you, and it catches you momentarily. You stop at the phrase, and are forced to think by the power of the expression. The phrase remains with you, for days, … Continue reading

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Sketches in a Norwegian bar

I’m told it’s the best pub in Oslo. ‘Lorry’. Maybe. But it’s wonderful, old fashioned in design, cosy, a small bar in the middle. You struggle through the clientele to order drinks. The room is on different levels, and there … Continue reading

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