Our Writer’s Quote for August addresses rejection and criticism. As writers, which one of us hasn’t had to deal with both? The upcoming  forthright though seemingly mean-spirited diary entry of Alice James, younger sister to William and Henry, may make us feel just a little bit better about it all.

George Eliot (Mary Ann Evans), as one of the leading English writers of the Victorian Era, published seven novels, including Silas MarnerAdam Bede and Middlemarch. George Eliot’s Life as Related in Her Letters and Journals was published in 1885 by J. W. Cross. The book covers Eliot’s journals from 1854 to 1880.

Though not related to Eliot’s professional work, this is what Alice had to say about George’s letters and journals:

“There is a faint spark of life and an occasional, remotely humorous touch in the last half. But what a monument of ponderous dreariness is the book! What a lifeless, diseased, self-conscious being she must have been! Not one burst of joy, not one ray of humour, not one living breath in one of her letters or journals . . . Whether it is that her dank, moaning features haunt and pursue one thro’ the book, or not, but she makes upon me the impression, morally and physically, of mildew, or some morbid growth — a fungus of a pendulous shape, or as of something damp to the touch.”


  1. Dan Beeaff says:

    Pretty tough assessment I’d say!

    Sent from my iPad



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