Luxury Travel Blog + writing

Anais and Me


If what Proust says is true, that happiness is the absence of fever, then I will never know happiness. For I am possessed by a fever for knowledge, experience, and creation. -Anais Nin

So what's with my obsession with the author Anais Nin (1903-1977)? It began with seeing the film Henry and June again (about Henry Miller, his wife June, and Anais) that led me to want to read more about them. Was it her ability to continue writing even though spurned by major publishers and critics for decades? Her 60-plus year devotion to her diaries that, for many years, she wrote in daily? Her ability to have a husband and two or three lovers and still make time to write? Ha. Just kidding about the last one Husband (a.k.a Scott)! There isn't enough antacid in the world to make that feasible. Much less being able to remember all of the lies necessary to keep big secrets (hell, I can't even remember my cell phone number!). So whether one likes her novels/diaries or not, I know that even if I only had a smidgen of her determination and complete disregard for her inner- and outer-critics I'd be, well, published and being sold in remainder bins everywhere by now.

Speaking of diaries. I tossed out my high-school/early 20's journals when I was 30 -- not because I had so many naughty secrets to hide (like Anais) but because they were so PATHETIC! I only wrote when I was feeling blue so when I re-read them I wanted to reach back in time to shake my younger self and yell "snap out of it woman!". I know one should be gentle and understanding of ones past foibles and emotional levels but did I have to be such a whiny-ass little snot? "Oh I'm so alone!" (I wasn't), "No one understands me!" (they did), "Why doesn't 'fill in the blank' like me? (maybe because I was a whiny-ass little snot?). Not that these are unusual teenage sentiments but I said them over and over and over again -- for YEARS! Granted, I'm still a snot, just not quite as whiny. I think. Anyway, as for Nin's diaries, I highly recommend reading the unexpurgated diaries that were published in the 80's/90's (after most of the people that could be hurt by them had passed on - she could be brutal) and start with, Henry and June: From a "Journal of Love". Meanwhile, I'm going to head to the library to pick up her novel, Spy in the House of Love, then back to my comfy chair with a big cup o' joe and my cat.

Anais Nin, Life, writer's block, and more:

Anais and Me + writing