[from sm.]

Dani Shapiro, Still Writing

The enemy of writing is wanting to please someone. —Karl Ove Knausgaard at last night’s Live from the NYPL with Jeffrey Eugenides

coachella valley as seen from keys view in joshua tree national park (aka me finally making use of the panorama function on my iphone).

the skies were beautiful yesterday, which made for some wonderful desert driving.  the weather was wonderfully cooperative while we were in palm springs, too — the highest it went was mid-80s, instead of the forecasted 100 palm springs was supposed to get today — and the weather back in the [san fernando] valley’s been pretty great while i’ve been here as well, all cool and breezy and in the high-60s/low-70s with low humidity.  i wish i could take the weather with me to nyc — i tell myself that no city is 100% perfect, and, if nyc’s flaw is its horrid, horrid summer, then, well, that ain’t so bad ……………………………… or so i try to tell myself.

ordering myself an ac unit for my window, though, because fuck trying to tough out the heat.  i have a book to finish writing/editing, and i need to be able to sleep at night — and, anyway, back to nyc on wednesday, and it’s been a pretty great two weeks on the west coast, but i am more than ready to go back home and hole up in my [mostly metaphorical] cave and get back to work!

This was a time of life, she understood, in which you might not know what you were, but that was all right. You judged people not on their success — almost no one they knew was successful at age twenty-two, and no one had a nice apartment, owned anything of value, dressed in expensive clothes, or had any interest in making money — but on their appeal. The time period between the ages of, roughly, twenty to thirty was often amazingly fertile. Great work might get done during this ten-year slice of time. Just out of college, they were gearing up, ambitious not in a calculating way, but simply eager, not yet tired. —Meg Wolitzer, The Interestings

was in portland last thursday through saturday and, now, basically plotting some way to replace LA with portland in this bicoastal thing i do because i fell totally head over heels with portland and its surrounding areas.  it’s so, so beautiful up there, the food is great, and the coffee is amazing, and i can’t wait to go back and get further acquainted.

photo array above arranged by day:

day 01:  portland, first looks — powell’s — voodoo doughnut — tasty n alder — the view from our hotel

day 02:  the big egg — multnomah falls — mirror lake — us highway 26 — koi fusion

day 03:  coava roasters — orgeon route 6 — nestucca wildlife refuge — us route 101 — bamboo sushi

day 04:  ristretto roasters — ristretto roasters — the waffle window — powell’s at pdx — portland, last looks

(not pictured:  stumptown at the ace hotel, the bonneville dam, munson falls, the octupus tree, tillamook cheese factory)

ohpleasestoptimeforme whispered: Just wanted to say that I love your Nell tattoo. When did you get it?

thanks!  i got it in june last year, the day after escaping gravity was released.

(i’m pretty sure it was the day after … it may have been two days after … or it may have been the day of.  i remember listening to “boy-x” and “ocean of light” as i walked over and waited.)

Jeff Vandermeer, Annihilation

from freunde von freunden

It is in vain to say human beings ought to be satisfied with tranquility: they must have action; and they will make it if they cannot find it. Millions are condemned to a stiller doom than mine, and millions are in silent revolt against their lot. Nobody knows how many rebellions besides political rebellions ferment in the masses of life which people earth. Women are supposed to be very calm generally: but women feel just as men feel; they need exercise for their faculties, and a field for their efforts as much as their brothers do; they suffer from too rigid a restraint, too absolute a stagnation, precisely as men would suffer; and it is narrow-minded in their more privileged fellow-creatures to say that they ought to confine themselves to making puddings and knitting stockings, to playing on the piano and embroidering bags. It is thoughtless to condemn them, or laugh at them, if they seek to do more or learn more than custom has pronounced necessary for their sex. —Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre