Tuesday, 11 October 2016

Midweek, midlife

Tuesday, so not quite.

Yesterday Diane Williams read (from Fine, Fine, Fine, Fine, Fine) and talked (with Kirsty Gunn, and the audience) at the London Review bookshop. At a certain point – quite early on – I realised, couldn’t deny it, that I was moved, in ways I hadn’t expected. You put out a book by a US writer who has been, with dedication and perseverance, practising a wholly non-commercial form of writing for a quarter of a century, and also (not least through her editing of the annual journal NOON over fifteen years) enabling other, younger writers – a writer who you think almost no one in the UK has heard of, let alone paid attention to, and you find that she is respected, loved, even.

The youngest person in the audience was three weeks old.

I doubt the Middle Ages knew that they were middle. They aren’t, now; they never were. A fair few of the people in the Middle Ages believed the world was about to end. There are, still, more beginnings than endings.

There are seven events involving CBe writers this week. Last night, Beverley Bie Brahic read (from Hunting the Boar) at the Manchester Literature Festival; tonight she reads in Bolton; tomorrow, Wednesday, she reads with Patrick Mackie (The Further Adventures Of The Lives Of The Saints) at the Broadway Bookshop in London E8 4QH). Also tomorrow, Lara Pawson (This Is the Place to Be) reads with Richard Scott at Burley Fisher in London (E8 4AA). No one can go to both: it’s either/or (and I tend to favour both/and). But there’ll be a mingling afterwards.

On Thursday, 13 October, Will Eaves will be performing The Absent Therapist at Vout-O-Reenees in London (E1 8BB). He’s done this before but again won’t be the same as before. This is special.

Same day, Thursday, Diane Williams will be reading at the English Faculty in Cambridge, 4.30pm. (I went there myself, back when; not the best time in my life, and Thursday will be only the second time I’ve been back there – an hour away on the train! – since 1972.)

This is not, for CBe, a typical week.

1 comment:

Beverley Bie Brahic said...

And you forgot to mention two reviews (Will Eaves, Patrick Mackie) in this week's TLS.