Lowry, Malcolm, “Ultramarine” (Overlook Press 1962)

“Perhaps you will write about your experiences.”
“Ja, perhaps,” I said. “That is certainly a point. but the desire to write is like a disease like any other disease; and what one writes, if one is to be any good, must be rooted firmly in some autochthony. And there I abdicate. I can no more create than fly. What I could achieve would be that usual self-conscious first novel, to be reviewed in the mortuary of the Times Literary Supplement, a ‘crude and unpleasant work’ , something of that nature, of which no principal character would be more more and no less, whether in liquor or in love, than the abominable author himself. I fear, also, that the disease is a childish one, a diarrhoea scribendi simply. But I don’t expect you to follow me. I’m sorry; I always speak like this when I’m tight.” (96)

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