Myself and Strangers A Memoir of Apprenticeship PDF î



3 thoughts on “Myself and Strangers A Memoir of Apprenticeship

  1. says:

    Favorite uote he's discussing off shore fishing Nor was such a team endeavor aided by the boats powerful motors an agreeable kind of angling to me being too far removed from the personal poking about on rivers and creeks and salt inlets that has always been my favored form of the sport†228 As a returning Marine from the South Pacific John Graves set out to discover of the world as he prepares himself to become a writer In the ten years after the war Graves married finished school divorced and traveled and lived in Mexico and Europe In Europe he primarily lived in Spain a country a decade after it’s own Civil War that reminded him of the American South 165 There he spends his free time sailing and touring on a motorcycle keeping a notebook of his activities while writing magazine articles and a novel The novel was never published In the mid 50s Graves returned to America Although he completed his novel manuscript on Long Island it was in his home state of Texas that he eventually returns and finds his first publishing success with his book Goodbye to a River which is still in print some fifty years after its first publication Myself and Strangers draws heavily on Graves’ notebooks during this era of his life notebooks that he burned after the completion of this book Although he was in his eighties when the book was published he sees himself as saying “adios†to the Young John a man fifty years younger 235 Certainly as he points out Young John was often naïve and prone to make generalizations 152 He was also narcissistic as he went from one love affair to another Although he leaves out a lot of the details he recalls many of the women he was involved with in Europe He was very found of Simone a French woman living in Spain till she became possessive Even then he noted that he couldn’t stay away from her “for she was very good in bed†54 He describes another woman as a “a young person of beauty and charm though no overload of intellect†71 Then there was Lena who’d married for life even though her and her husband had separated and were no longer together She had “a slim responsive body and a wry earthy intelligence†81 And then there was Paula who’d he’d hoped to have a casual affair but realized at the end that she wasn’t content and wanted Graves laments “Maybe I was simply not drawn to hedonistic women or they were not drawn to me…“ 212 Despite looking at woman in this way he’s bold enough to suggests in his journals that the difference between him and “the great lovers and cocksmen of the world is that he sees women as people†218 Two weeks later he also wrote in his journal comparing himself to other men that he’s “preserved the illusion that integrity is possible†221Unlike Theroux whom I recently reviewed Graves avoids other writers On several occasions he crosses path with Hemingway but he never goes to present himself to the table where the writer is “holding court†67 Interestingly though he often reflects on things with his own internal dialogue with Faulkner the subject of his Master’s thesis and an author who was content to stick around Mississippi and not spend long periods of time in traveling or in Europe Throughout the book Graves reflects on his reading He dislikes Michener and although he didn’t want to meet Hemingway does like some of his work He reads Thomas Wolfe and the classics and sees himself influenced by Joyce Hemingway Faulkner F M Ford OHenry Tolstoy Shakespeare the King James Bible and Mark Twain 219 Commenting on the Bible he notes that he’s always been a “sometime Bible reader†and while the reverence that drew him to the Scriptures have changed what hasn’t changed is his reverence for the King James Version 173There are numerous parallels that draw me to Graves We’re both Southerners although I’m loathe to include Texas in my South Graves noted that he’d believed “until he was twelve or thirteen that Yankees were malevolent creatures who had destroyed the world of my forebears†77 He enjoyed fishing especially in streams see uote at beginning and with a fly rod Once while fishing off Sags Harbor he noted that he’d caught some nice fish “though I wish now that I’d had the sense to use a fly rod on them which would have given double the pleasure†224 He also enjoyed sailing not for the competition but for the pleasure of being on the water He criticizes one friend for being too competitive Sailing with Wally even when there was no race was a straining to get the most of out of the boat with no time for simply basking in the pleasure of the water and the wind and the dayAlthough I enjoyed the book I don’t really recommend it as it seems to be mostly patched together At the end Graves refers to his younger self as a “backward bastard’ and wished he’d “been a bit uicker to discern and pursue right directions†235 He has tried to tie the book together showing him coming home to find himself and his true purpose and his connection to the land; however little is seen of that when he’s wandering around the world enjoying parties and bull fights and chasing women The book does show us how he struggled as an author and reminds me that I might want to destroy my earlier journals before I am in my eighties I also wished he'd revealed how his financed his travels as he certainly didn't sell enough magazine articles to live like he did


  2. says:

    Graves reads his journal and comments on young John from old John's perspective Not so much about writing but about the characters and places that came to shape some of his writing


  3. says:

    A classic man’s man post WW2 memoir Graves personifies the traveling writer; macho adventure seeking well read x pat mixing with affluent travelers His writing is heavily influenced by Hemingway’s crisp cut to the chase prose But somehow Graves seems innocent imperfect personal than Hemingway a friend not a legend Graves adds an interesting time twist to his own memoir acting as the elderly editor and commentator looking back on his journal entries from his 20’s I need to read a Grave’s novel or two now that I know the man Graves and Hemingway inspire me to change my writing style Throw out the flourish strip edit cut the truth down to the uick What a great book to start the new year 1 5 09


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Myself and Strangers A Memoir of Apprenticeship [PDF / EPUB] Myself and Strangers A Memoir of Apprenticeship In Myself and Strangers the much admired author of Goodbye to a River and other nonfiction classics recounts his long winding journey toward becoming a writer in the years after World War IIDrawing up In Myself and Strangers the much Strangers A Epub Ù admired author of Goodbye to a River and other nonfiction classics recounts his long winding journey toward becoming a writer in the years after World War IIDrawing upon memory and his journals Graves moves uickly through his early days in Texas and his brief dramatic stint in the Pacific with the marines The story starts in earnest with the year after the war when his uest to find himself takes him to Mexico where he punches out his young man’s recollections on an old portable Myself and MOBI :ß typewriter beginning a lifelong habit of looking inward of observation and note taking We follow him to Martha Foley’s famous short fiction class at Columbia University and then to Europe where he spends nearly three years in s Spain part of the expat communities of Mallorca Madrid and Tenerife keeping the journals that form the basis of this memoirWe meet dozens of fascinating people the large and generous Park Benjamin who put him up in Mexico City; the restless self involved expatriates of Mallorca; Pepe Mut and other Spanish friends Graves sails and Strangers A ePUB ´ and fishes with and who allow him to become acuainted with the real Spain; and many other artists and writers both famous and unknownIt is a time of serious work and serious play but whether cheering at a bullfight sipping a strong local wine and Strangers A Memoir of PDF \ at a Canary Island literary salon or spearing crustaceans underwater Graves never forgets his deep seated literary ambition “I would like so God damned much to write something worth writing” he says in an early journal entry And we see him producing despite many false starts a stream and Strangers A Memoir of PDF \ of stories and articles and the beginning of a novel By the end of Myself and Strangers Graves has returned to Texas where he finds both his true voice and the world that has become the focus of much of his admired work Here is a wonderfully revealing portrait of a young writer on his way—of the strivings struggles and self scrutiny that marked the beginning of an extraordinary literary career.