Thursday, February 24, 2005

white noise

When The Boss Come To Dinner was not at the top of the pile of bedside books. That was White Noise, which I'm reading at last.

And I have just happened to read an annotation of the first page which includes observations on the craft:

...when DeLillo writes, he is trying to nail down something that he already has in his head, or is discovering things as he writes. "I'm always discovering -- I should say, 'frequently discovering' -- things during the act of writing," he says. "I never sketch out anything in advance. At most I have a very, very general idea; I depend on language to produce ideas, to produce characters and stories."

Comments: white noise

What are you making of "White Noise" so far? I tried reading it last year and wound up throwing it aside in disgust. I was getting irritated with it gradually, but then my eyes lighted upon the sentence "I had never looked at coffee" before and I just snapped.

Oddly enough I made it through all 830-odd pages of "Underworld" with comparatively few difficulties, even if I didn't see why it had to be quite that long...
Posted by James Russell at February 24, 2005 06:05 PM

Quite the reverse, actually.

I found "Underworld" increasingly ... difficult. Love "White Noise" so far. (This may change)I had it reccommended to me years ago - don't know why it took me so long.

I think these things are sometimes as much about timing as anything else.
Posted by boynton at February 24, 2005 06:20 PM

I thought "White Noise" was great - "something about them suggesting massive insurance coverage", "gathered and tended the children" and of course wearing sunglasses to make Hitler Studies sexy.

It and "Libra" are my two favourite Delillos -perhaps because they both have very distinct tones of voice, unlike some of his other works.

Whereas "Underworld" is one of my current books to make plane flights fly by - and it's not really making time fly so far.
Posted by Nabakov at March 1, 2005 12:48 AM

Distinct, and succinct.

Is it the (100?) pages of Baseball in Underworld? I think I could fly through 100 pages of cricket. The 1961 Tied Test or something.
Posted by boynton at March 1, 2005 02:01 PM

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