Thankyou, Mrs Karenina.

18 Mar

Welcome. To you and to me. I would like to remind us both that we should not expect this blog to be always witty, always insightful, always passionate or any other impressive adjectives, because, quite frankly, I am not always impressive and I’m OK with that. I hope you are too.

You might be wondering about the name. What’s Anna got to do with it? And since when did anyone call her Mrs?

Well, thank you for asking.

For a long time I’ve want to be part of the literary community I dabble in as an editor-wordyperson. Maybe a blog reviewing books… Maybe one looking at the real world from the perspective of fictional characters…

But writing about writing seems to be such navel gazing. What can be said about a good book that the book doesn’t say itself? No one wants to read my Bachelor’s English essays… why would they read them in blog form? What have I got to say that’s worth reading?

You see, I spend every day evaluating what people say and how they say it. I pick people and ideas to pieces and play with words, right down to – dare I say it – grammar and punctuation. So instead of just getting the hell on with writing something, I have effectively been banished from the written world though self-critique.

Long have I wanted to blog. Long has the thought terrified me.

Which brings me to Tolstoy.

This blog is mainly about error: a lesson I learned from a big fat Russian novel. I first started reading Anna a couple of weeks ago, and the first sentence hit me like a ton of bricks:

All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.

Good stories aren’t made of perfection. They’re made of flaws. Errors. Failures. Tensions. Inequities, injustices. And they’re things I care about. In novels and the real world.

This blog is a chance to celebrate the good I see and (more often than not) interrogate the bad, but also just a safe place to rant to people who will listen. For too long I have chewed the ears off long-suffering friends and an interminably resilient boyfriend, snarked at the letters editor of Fairfax and outraged my mother, all because I have been too afraid to actually make my thoughts public.

I start writing now. And like the things I’m ranting about, my writing will probably be wonky and wrong – in its own way.

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One Response to “Thankyou, Mrs Karenina.”

  1. Pierre March 18, 2013 at 3:20 am #

    smashing, looking forward to reading more!

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