“In 1919 John Middleton Murry was appointed editor of the London literary magazine The Athenaeum. Shortly afterward, in a rare case of felicitous nepotism, he hired his wife Katherine Mansfield to be its fiction reviewer … from her very first column she’s frank about the terrible ephemerality of most fiction, and the trap both reviewers and readers can fall into by hitching themselves to a brand new novel’s rapidly dying star … Mansfield openly wonders why anyone should bother with new novels at all.”
For more of this morning’s roundup, click here.
Above all do not lose your desire to walk. Everyday I walk myself into a state of well being and walk away from every illness. I have walked myself into my best thoughts and I know of no thought so burdensome that one cannot walk away from it. Thus if one keeps on walking everything will be all right.
But I’m tending to think zombies are the perfect metaphor for culture itself. That it is dead, still shambling around looking for brains, and endlessly repeating the things it did in life. I mean, I’m sure it will only be another few years until the moviegoing public gets to learn the exciting story of how high school student Peter Parker had the transformative accident that changed him into the amazing Spider-Man … again. You know? It’s the same stories and same ideas reiterated over and over again. And if we do it in 3-D, if we do it in enough spectacular digital photography, then perhaps people won’t notice that we haven’t had a new idea in decades. Culture is just a shambling zombie that repeats what it did in life; bits of it drop off, and it doesn’t appear to notice.
— John Keats
I love this sign. It’s like pointing me to my destiny.
The greatest prison that people live in is the fear of what other people think.
Literary presents | Mugs
Well, I started this before Christmas and then stopped because I figured people didn’t need any more gift ideas… But I still had some links saved, and Christmas is not the only reason to buy presents, is it? And there’s also self-gifts. Celebrate yourself with a mug!
- Chesire Cat disappearing mug (click the gif to appreciate effect), from the Unemployed Philosophers Guide, $12.95
- Virginia Woolf from BlackbirdStudioUK (Etsy), £8.55
- Nineteen Eighty-Four from Penguin (the UK shop is not working atm), $9.95
- The Hobbit from CaesarGJ (Etsy), £8.55
- Jane Austen characters from The Literary Gift Company, £9.95 (The Shakespeare one is also amazing, so is Dickens’)
- I Would Prefer Not To (Bartleby the Scrivener) from Melville House, $20
- Shakespearean Insults from the Unemployed Philosophers Guide, $12.95
- Literary Lions: Lord Byron, Oscar Wilde, Virginia Woolf, Jane Austen, Charles Dickens, from Right Note, £7.80
- Literary Transport (Little Women) from The Contemporary Home, £5.00
In case someone was wondering (I know you all were) my favourite ones are the ones in the middle column. Specially the characters one. But I have the Penguin one from P&P (which I love) and one from the Jane Austen gift shop (not on sale anymore) and maybe that’s enough JA mugs for one person <3