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What are you Writing?

Tiki Tom

Call Me a Cab
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2,756
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Oahu, North Polynesia
Do young people still dream of running away to Paris and becoming a starving Expat writer? Are they still haunted by the lost generation of the 1920s and the Beat Generation of the 1950s? I know it was one of my fantasies when I was in my twenties. Who wouldn’t want to hang out in cafe’s, surrounded by history and art, while learning French, finding love, and working on the great American novel? I suspect it is one of the quintessential American middle class fantasies about being unique and escaping the rat race. Someone said “Others go into exile. Americans go on vacation.” So, on vacation I went. Spent a lot of time in the city of light, but never lived there and never wrote anything there except postcards. (I still kind of regret that I never actually lived in Paris.) The following article hints that the dream is still alive, even in the 2020s. Is it? Does it matter? Would we lose something if the daydream faded away? Is the fantasy of being a writer/artist more important than actually being successful at it? Vive le fantasme!

https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/is-hemingways-paris-lifestyle-still-possible
 

Tiki Tom

Call Me a Cab
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2,756
Location
Oahu, North Polynesia
Ho ho! same topic. Newest article by a young writer who is absolutely bonkers about Paris in the twenties. Must be because we are at the 100th anniversary. He certainly makes it sound romantic.

https://www.ft.com/content/918b404f-9f71-4e55-a032-b82ee6233f02

Again, why is being an expat writer in Paris the persistent archetype of all American literary fantasies? Prague in the 90s never quite worked out. Bali, Mexico, and Greece were all briefly in the running for places where writers could go and live cheaply and soak up the atmosphere. I think Portugal is the fad of the moment. But, somehow, Paris remains the gold standard, despite the fact that it has changed so much over the last 50 years.
 

AmateisGal

I'll Lock Up
Messages
6,069
Location
Nebraska
Do young people still dream of running away to Paris and becoming a starving Expat writer? Are they still haunted by the lost generation of the 1920s and the Beat Generation of the 1950s? I know it was one of my fantasies when I was in my twenties. Who wouldn’t want to hang out in cafe’s, surrounded by history and art, while learning French, finding love, and working on the great American novel? I suspect it is one of the quintessential American middle class fantasies about being unique and escaping the rat race. Someone said “Others go into exile. Americans go on vacation.” So, on vacation I went. Spent a lot of time in the city of light, but never lived there and never wrote anything there except postcards. (I still kind of regret that I never actually lived in Paris.) The following article hints that the dream is still alive, even in the 2020s. Is it? Does it matter? Would we lose something if the daydream faded away? Is the fantasy of being a writer/artist more important than actually being successful at it? Vive le fantasme!

https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/is-hemingways-paris-lifestyle-still-possible
If I could afford it, I would TOTALLY DO THIS, though I don't know if I'd run off to Paris. Instead, I'd run off to England and to a nice little village where I would write in a pub, or by the river, or a lake, or on the train, or in the backyard of my adorable cottage.

In my early 20s, I had dreams of living in Europe. But then I met my (now ex) husband, got married, got pregnant right away, and, well, life got in the way. Now that my daughter is grown, I really would like to live overseas at least once in my life. I feel like I would deeply, deeply regret it if I didn't at least try.
 

AmateisGal

I'll Lock Up
Messages
6,069
Location
Nebraska
What am I writing?

I just wrote 1280 words on my new novel which is AMAZING considering I hadn't even looked at this manuscript for several weeks. The words are not my best, but they got on the page, and that is what matters. I'm trying to write more, to put aside this damn internal editor that judges every single word I put on the page and frequently keeps me from writing at all. I'm also working on a paper for class that I will present at a conference next year and it will also be published - and that is eliciting a whole other realm of fear and pressure. Trying to work through it all.

Why do writers OVERTHINK EVERYTHING?!?
 

FOXTROT LAMONT

One of the Regulars
Messages
292
Location
St John's Wood, London UK
There is more fiction in fact than fact in fiction as to the much embellished expat Paris milieu.
Last night I stumbled about sleeplessly adrift with Mead's Middlemarch barnacle then gave another
go at a crypto primer before a look at Lady Chatterly's hay romp with a servant film, all to no nod relief.
Yet Lawrence is a man who could capture the essence of it all be he where he was, inside himself. Environ
no doubt but distant to man and moment.
 

MikeKardec

One Too Many
Messages
1,148
Location
Los Angeles
Do young people still dream of running away to Paris and becoming a starving Expat writer? Are they still haunted by the lost generation of the 1920s and the Beat Generation of the 1950s? I know it was one of my fantasies when I was in my twenties. Who wouldn’t want to hang out in cafe’s, surrounded by history and art, while learning French, finding love, and working on the great American novel? I suspect it is one of the quintessential American middle class fantasies about being unique and escaping the rat race. Someone said “Others go into exile. Americans go on vacation.” So, on vacation I went. Spent a lot of time in the city of light, but never lived there and never wrote anything there except postcards. (I still kind of regret that I never actually lived in Paris.) The following article hints that the dream is still alive, even in the 2020s. Is it? Does it matter? Would we lose something if the daydream faded away? Is the fantasy of being a writer/artist more important than actually being successful at it? Vive le fantasme!

https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/is-hemingways-paris-lifestyle-still-possible
I think I'd go to Lisbon. Both Spain and Portugal are countries that have great bookstores and a way of life that is getting harder to access in France. I was in Lisbon in 2018 and it was reasonably priced (for Europe) and beautiful, like a amazing melding of Europe and California. The best thing about Portugal is that the people never hold it against you if you can't speak their language. They know Portuguese is pretty weird. Most younger people speak English or German. My Spanish got me nowhere! I have a fear that Europe is about to get crushed economically, but I'm guessing Portugal, which knows how to exist at a more modest level than Germany or France, won't get too much worse. I spent a good deal of time in the bookstore below ... it opened in 1732!
 

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