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The Making of a Writer, Volume 2: Journals, 1963-1969by Gail Godwin
Synopses & Reviews
True, time is the villain and we are trapped in him. True, love is sometimes not returned. True, friends are sometimes false. But to be aware of this--all of it--and stillwant to go on living, that is the triumph. It is the reward.
As a young woman and aspiring author, Gail Godwin kept a detailed journal of her hopes and dreams, her loveaffairs, daily struggles, and small triumphs as she yearned for the day when she would finally become a published writer. At the urging of her friend Joyce Carol Oates, Godwin has distilled these early journals into twoparts: This second and final volume opens in London in 1963 and concludes with the triumphant sale of Godwin's first novel in 1969.
Newly divorced and filled with literary ambition, Godwinarrives in London in 1962. At the start of this second volume, the call to write has become ingrained in the trajectory of her life. Though she is hobbled by a tedious but well-paying job with the U.S. Travel Service(I thought I should no more be doing this job than raising skunks), Godwin's journals brim with the emotional complexity and intellectual curiosity that will soon distinguish her novels, anda sharp wit that belies her twenty-six years.
Through these pages, Godwin's development as a writer takes center stage, bolstered by her keen observations of humanrelationships--especially those between men and women: I want to exploit, define, name, place this ever-shifting contest between men and women. Her own love affairs are varied, doomed, andfascinating: There's a short-lived engagement to a rugby player, a dalliance with a policeman, a tortured marriage to a psychiatrist obsessed with Scientology. Men have let me down, shewrites, and I construct my meaning in the emptiness they've left behind.
Leaving London and all its passionate wonders and disappointments, Godwin arrives in Iowa Cityto study at the Iowa Writers' Workshop. There, taught by Kurt Vonnegut and Jose Donoso, building friendships with Jane Barnes, John Casey, David Plimpton, and John Irving, Gail Godwin finally achievesher dream--and a published novelist is born. The Making of a Writer, Volume 2 is a remarkable window into the life of one of the most notable American writers of a generation, and anextraordinarily candid look at the very heart of a woman who has written herself to acclaim.
From the Hardcover edition.
A second half to a volume of journal writings by the three-time National Book Award finalist discusses how, after establishing her purpose as an author, she published her first stories and novels and made insightful observations about the literary world. By the author of Evensong.
Table of Contents
[v.1]. Journals, 1961-1963 — v.2. Journals, 1963-1969
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