Comentario de Adam Thirlwell sobre la máquina de escribir

Adam Thirlwell

THE ROOM IS THE SMALLEST and highest in a Georgian-era house — the reason why it has an elegant, unusable fireplace. The view is of London roofs and a tree and some sky: a basic mixture of greens and grays. It provides a restful space for curative daydreaming; because, no doubt, I think of this room as a place of anxiety.
I’m always envious of fashion ateliers or artists’ studios. They seem the true aesthetic workplaces. A writer’s room feels so empty. So I try to have as many work implements as possible, to somehow make the act of writing more real. In this room, there’s an Apple desktop and a chalkboard, an iPad and various notebooks and felt-tip pens. I write on an outsize table, not a neat escritoire — as if I might be cutting film or pasting up collages.
I arrange around me mini totems and talismans to somehow make me believe that what I’m doing has a history, and therefore a rationale. Facing me, propped against the computer screen, is a postcard of Proust’s bedroom. On the wall behind the computer are Modernist posters by Braque and Saul Steinberg. On the wall to my left is a miniature photo of the 20th-century Argentine noir novelist Roberto Arlt, which I bought from a rare books dealer: partly because I love the writer, but mainly because I loved the tiny photo itself, this small survivor from a different era.
I vowed that the typewriter — an original Olivetti Valentine designed by Ettore Sottsass, which was a present from my wife — wouldn’t be only ornamental. But I’m such a bad typist that I can only use it for rudimentary documents — maybe the barest outline of a novel or notes that are meant to be tender and moving, but which have the all-caps stare and the million misspellings of a crazy person.
In “Lurid & Cute,” a disaffected suburbanite has an extramarital affair that sets him on a path of increasingly severe transgressions (out April, $26, Farrar, Straus and Giroux).


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