Writers on Writing

I’m late to reading it but loved the long essay on Elizabeth Hardwick in the May 13th New York Review of Books, by Darryl Pinckney (sorry, link will work for subscribers only).  The best bit is the the final paragraph:

Hardwick liked to say that there were really only two reasons to write: desperation or revenge.  Yet she wrote to honor the literature she cared about, which was why in fiction she was so easily discouraged.  She could always think of someone whose work she liked better than what she proposed to do on the same subject. . . . In her short stories, the qualities that make her prose an art that cannot be imitated, its rhythmic, pure sound, its control and texture, its daring intellectual pitch—all of these shine on and on and on.

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