Sometime in my 20s, I wrote a novel called Grim inspired by Angela Carter’s Wise Children.
I dimly recall my tome being plotted around twins, a fictitious rock group, a deeply neurotic mother, and some Kurt Cobain inspired suicide pact.
I wish now that I had found and chosen De Lillo’s Great Jones Street rather than Wise Children to be progenitor of my pastichery. A poor man’s DeLillo might have been almost publishable, as the career of [insert the name here of someone you’re jealous of] has shown in spades. But nobody can really do Angela Carter other than Angela Carter herself.
That said, after reading me this story, Chantal sent me one of her own, which was deeply, impressively Carteresque. So maybe it is possible, but just not for me.
This podcast is for Swiss Cottage Library 1. Those wonderful Civil Servants of The Book! Quiet, circumspect folk, who walked past us as we sat for an hour on their echoey stairwell and didn’t at any point ask what the hell we were doing there, or attempt to shoo us away.
What will we become of us, where will we go, when all our libraries have been turned into Primark stores and coffee shops?
- Where a cup of tea only costs 80p, and there’s homemade lemon-drizzle cake. Though we ate Belvita fruit and fibre biscuits, as this is what I’d brought along to complement the fibrous nature of Angela Carter’s prose. ↩