...this line from The Best of Everything:
"[She] had never been poor enough to feel the fright of poverty but only its small annoyances."
Most perfect phrasing ever of my quasi-adult lifestyle. For instance, this morning I handwashed a thrift-store cashmere sweater in the bathroom sink with shampoo because I can't afford dry-cleaning. Not exactly rent-or-food stuff...I mean, I'm unemployed, but I won't be for long. I have savings. Frugality for me is a virtue and not yet a necessity--I let people buy me drinks at bars. I don't go to movies. I haven't gotten that Nancy Drew tattoo.
And the whole novel was marvelous--the stories of young women in publishing in New York in the early fifties. One way to judge the success of a novel is whether I talk aloud to the characters, and here I kept shaking my head and muttering "He's never going to marry you, honey." And I was right, of course. If only one could be so clear-headed about one's own relationships.
I also finished The Outward Room: going to drag out the old adjective "lyrical" for the writing. It turned out much better for the protagonist than I'd feared. And it's always fascinating to read a novel from a time when Italians weren't yet white.
This morning I started reading Suzanne Rivecca's short story collection Death is Not an Option; I'm not even through the title story and I've already added it to my work-in-progress best of 2010 list. I'm such a sucker for effortlessness of voice!!