Monday, September 21, 2009

I Knew I Liked Her

But now I know I love her.

Yesterday's Washington Post included a Bookworld for the first time since they discontinued it. All because of the National Book Festival next weekend.

But I digress.

I'm here to talk about Margaret Drabble.

She wrote a piece for the Writing Life about her new book, The Pattern in the Carpet: A Personal History with Jigsaws.

Here's the part that will interest us:

My controlling metaphor in the book is the jigsaw puzzle...but I note that I have also invoked metaphors drawn from the half-arts(as Goethe called them) of needlework and crafts. Writing and stitching have something in common, to me, and this is not because I am a good needlewoman (I am not) but because the patient assembling and incremental growth of a piece of text, as of a piece of tapestry, offer similar satisfactions. Writing offers terrors that stitching mercifully lacks: hopeless failure, self-disgust, existential despair. You don't suffer those emotions when working on a needlepoint cushion.

Ah. The existential despair of stitching. Does it exist?

1 comment:

C in DC said...

Maybe not "terror" but I've felt despair over projects, especially BAPs.