So: I’m still reading Mrs. Dalloway. Today is my favorite day — the day when you read the haunting final section with the news of Septimus’ death… I’m also working on the book. I just wrote a scene at the Gezira Sporting Club. It’s tough to remember antagonism: I’m trying to get the characters to be antagonized, but they keep not being antagonized. It’s so hard to crystallize their desire around something.
Patrick Somerville’s awesome novel, The Cradle, does that really well. A father-to-be sets out on a quest for the antique cradle in which his wife was rocked. At her behest. It makes sense; it’s a great, simple premise. Almost like Mrs. Dalloway — which begins with that lovely quest for flowers for a dinner party.