It is of course precisely in such episodes of mental traveling that writers are known to do good work, sometimes even their best, solving formal problems, getting advice from Beyond, having hypnagogic adventures that with luck can be recovered later on. Idle dreaming is often of the essence of what we do. We sell our dreams.
Central problem: modern artists have to fight against the public, media and critics for their authenticity.
In 8 ½ Fellini needed an idea for a movie, he fought a much greater fight with himself about the meaning of life than just Birdman’s temptation to go down the easy lane to obtain money and fame. Reporter asking about Barthes is clearly Fellini’s critic he imagined hanging, yet today he gets only few seconds of screen time, he isn’t representing a point of view, not in our times.
In this essay an aphorism is presented, and the essay itself is a commentary on it. Of course, in order to practice this style of reading as an art, one thing is above all essential—something that today has been thoroughly forgotten (and so it will require still more time before my writings are “readable”)— something for which one almost needs to be a cow, at any rate not a modern man— rumination.
Nothing that I wrote yesterday is true. Only this remains – that reality interests me inasmuch as it is plastic, and that I care more – infinitely more – for what may be than for what has been. I lean with a fearful attraction over the depths of each creature’s possibilities and weep for all that lies atrophied under the heavy lid of custom and morality.
De tout ce que j’écrivais hier, rien n’est vrai. Il reste ceci : que la réalité m’intéresse comme une matièreplastique ; et j’ai plus de regard pour ce qui pourrait être, infiniment plus que pour ce qui a été. Je me penche vertigineusement sur les possibilités de chaque être et pleure tout ce que le couvercle des mœurs atrophie.
Thus we see the painter selecting and composing and rendering particulars in order to body forth a pleasing fullness in his scene. The storyteller, by contrast (…), must divine which episodes of his history hold promise of fullness, and tease from them their hidden meanings, braiding these together as one braids a rope.