Mary Gaitskill: Morning, Afternoon or Evening

Mary Gaitskill

hide captionMary Gaitskill has two cures for writer's block: 1) Do something else or 2) keep writing.

Mary Gaitskill

Mary Gaitskill is the author of four novels; her most recent, Veronica, was a finalist for the 2005 National Book Award. Her short story "Secretary" was the basis for the film of the same name.

How She Writes: "It varies. Sometimes I start a few hours after I get up, sometimes I don't start until early evening. I used to start at about 10 at night and work until early morning. My preferred way to work is to start in the early afternoon and work until about 3, go do errands, have dinner and then write for a few more hours in the evening."

Writer's Block Remedies: "Sometimes I decide I don't want to write because it isn't the thing for me to be doing right then and I go do something else. Writing requires an intense inner focus and sometimes you need to express outward, physically or socially. Sometimes I think how awful it is that I'm blocked and keep writing."

A Great Sentence: "I'd rather other people point those out."

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Books Featured In This Story

Veronica
Veronica

by Mary Gaitskill

Hardcover, 227 pages | purchase

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  • Mary Gaitskill
Bad Behavior
Bad Behavior

by Mary Gaitskill

Paperback, 203 pages | purchase

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Because They Wanted to
Because They Wanted to

Stories

by Mary Gaitskill

Paperback, 254 pages | purchase

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