——-Other authors . . . I suppose my position is to be opposed to the whole sorry lot of them. Only out of embarrassment for a history that failed its full sentimental charge on our consciousness, could one refer to those striving novelists. Novelists? What a quaint occupation! Write a story! Make it out of assimilated life, disgorged; and let out your own idling theories of life, in the pacing, so the neighborly reader can inoculate themselves. Books like that, are dead.
——-It was the week that the famous recluse writer, JD Salinger, died, and we were sitting at the kitchen table with Diane, she comes over for dinner and it’s always a kind of marathon, even with just Janet and her, we create this epic mood where all things are reviewed. I steer things around, it seems like tentatively at first, and I wind up inspired, in a frenzy, talking for the ages. I probably brought JD Salinger into the conversation, we can never remember how these marathon conversations proceed exactly, of course they move through associated topics, and land, or light on a current thought, ideally focused on a current event. So the world is always an illustration, for the breakthrough in thoughts among the players at our kitchen table. It’s a drama, and it seems like there is an audience, people listening in, and Theo always joins us, sometimes Roy and Sally. The way we treat the topics , they are both sweeping up, and able to lay a foundation for the future. There is a reader who will see what I mean.
——-Everybody, it seems to me, has heard the story about how we tried to deliver my novel Black Forest to JD Salinger, and how we got to his chalet on the mountaintop in Cornish, New Hampshire, and had that brief shouting match with him–the ghost himself it seemed like, not the real man, the clinging ghost of the famous author who will not brook disturbance, not have a self-imposed isolation shattered. Well! That is before he died, anyway. Now there is a shakeup, the situation different! He is a silly mortal man gone to all tomorrows’ parties now! I am cackling under my breath, but speaking with a steely calm, and I know Diane has heard this story and how we have the typed letter JDS sent to Janet. But she wants to glare at it now. She is acting like she never saw this, but it is just that she hasn’t seen it in light of the death of the author of it. I think it is symbolic! She hardly reveres him. Well, it just so happens I looked for that letter in my files, just yesterday, and put it in a protective plastic folder, along with other correspondence we have with literary notables.
—–So I trudged on upstairs to get it from my office. Once I got there I felt like staying for awhile . . . (Read Full Story from “FAME AND FORTUNE“)