Tuesday, February 27, 2007

The Guardian rewards my unkindness

Despite my rudeness about The Guardian, the newspaper rewards me with a deluge of new visitors from its book blog by Sarah Crown, the editor of Guardian Unlimited Books. She quoted from my piece on Costa winner Stef Penney and how you don't have to leave a carbon trail the length of Hale-Bopp to inspire the literary imagination. [Click here] Sarah also writes about their recent blog talking point on literary pet hates. I suppose I'd have to say John Updike exercises an irrational influence on me - entire newspapers have been discarded unread at the very sight of his name in a banner, bookshops vacated at the very mention of his name. It maybe the Rabbit books and a stupid and literal association with bunnies - Updike looks like one, incidentally. Rabbits have always unnerved me for some reason. And yet I like the line from his (otherwise unread) memoirs Self-Consciousness: "Fame is a mask that eats into the face."

2 comments:

Clive Davis said...

Go on, give the later Rabbit novels another try. Wonderful stuff. As is "Self-Consciousness"

Ms Baroque said...

No, no, nononoooo... leave Updike alone! If you've read Couples you're done. He leaves a rather unpleasant, glib taste in the mouth.

I say thi, in fact I used to love him! But one day I woke up feeling empty, and I realised the emptiness was in the Updike spot. And he was still in it.