lunedì 28 agosto 2017


What did Simenon himself say about why he stopped as a novelist? 

Ce qu’a dit Simenon lui-même sur les raisons pour lesquelles il a cessé d'être un romancier
Cosa ha detto Simenon a sé stesso sulle ragioni per cui ha terminato di essere un romanziere 

Once the author decided to permanently stop writing novels, he arranged an official announcement in the Swiss publication 24 Heures under the headlineSimenon: “I will write no more.” Paris Match rerun of that revealing interview, which is still available on line, allows some explanatory translated extractions of his own words. As you will readily discover, his explanations don’t all match that others questioned, speculated, or concluded. 
Simenon begins with I’m going to tell you what happened to me and then provides a detailed account of how he had recently started another novel, but the following day, I thought, looked at the walls, looked at the objects and pictures around me, and for the thirtieth time in my life, I felt foreign. That same dayhaving made the decision to no longer write novelshe put his house on the market and, within 48 hours, bought a new place to live. He continuesThis is the first time I’ve spoken about it. From now on, I am ’without profession on my passport. In fact, I have a horror of the term ‘man of letters.’ I am only a novelist and as such I will no longer write novels. He goes on to list the many components that factored into his decision: (1) On his physical health. He explains how, for almost a full year, attacks of painful vertigo prevented writingHowever, to write my novels, I have to be in one hundred percent great shape. […] Therefore, I made the decision to stop. (2) On his psychological state. I realized that for fifty-five years I have lived in the skin of my characters. […Now, all of a sudden, I want to live a life of my own. []  I became the slave of my characters. […Now, I no longer permit them to impose their presence on me. [] I have reentered my own skin, my own life, and I no longer have the strength to create characters. (3) On making a fresh start. It's part of my personality that, when I break away from someone or something, I don't go back there, I never think about it again, it's terminated… (4) On contemplating his mortality. I always needed more strength to write my novels[If I had continued, I would have killed myself in two or three years… (5) On relieving his exhaustion. After fifty-five years of that work, one can get fatigued. […] I reacted in the sense of a certain self-guarding of myself (6) On his absolute disinterest. I am completely detached from my work. It’s no longer mine(7) On a possible relapse. When asked if the offer of a Nobel Prize in Literature would draw him back to writing novels, his long-winded answer was likely a no: At forty-five, I would have accepted. A few years ago, the Germans and Americans were working to get me nominated.  I cut that short. I wouldn't have accepted it, no matter what. 8On his new direction. I’m drawing a line in order to reposition myself. I want to be sitting down in an armchair, not looking at anything, telling myself stories I will immediately forget… I know I will not bore myself at all. I am here to spend time with so many things. 
Notably, nowhere in this interview does Simenon mention influences related to his wife Denise’s exodus or his mother Henriette’s death, both being events that probably factored into his decision. 
David P Simmons 

domenica 27 agosto 2017

Un choix de trois romans de la saga, sur un thème particulier 

Trois enquêtes en Vendée 

"Au même titre que la Charente-Maritime, la Vendée a bien été pour [Simenon] un fécond terreau d'écriture. Marais, plaines maritimes, bocage le relient au même océan." (Michel Carly, in Simenon, Les années secrètes). Maigret a souvent enquêté, surtout dans les débuts de la saga, hors de son territoire parisien de prédilection. La Vendée est le terrain d'investigation des trois romans que nous vous proposons aujourd'hui.
"Le marais… D'immenses étendues plates, coupées de canaux, avec parfois des fermes basses, des cabanes, comme on dit en Vendée, et les tas de bouse de vache qui, séchée en galettes, sert de combustible…" (La maison du juge)
"C'est dommage, monsieur le commissaire, que vous preniez contact avec notre pays en plein hiver… L'été, la région est si jolie que des gens l'appellent la Venise verte… " (L'inspecteur Cadavre) 
"Il n'y avait pas seulement l'eau du ciel, mais celle qui tombait des gouttières en grosses gouttes froides, et il en dégoulinait sur les portes des maisons, le long des trottoirs où des ruisseaux faisaient un bruit de torrent" (Maigret a peur) 


Una scelta di tre romanzi della serie, su un tema particolare 

Tre inchieste in Vandea 

«Allo stesso titolo della Charente-Maritime, la Vandea è davvero stata [per Simenon] un territorio fertile per la scrittura. Paludi, pianure marittime, boscaglia lo ricollegano allo stesso oceano» (Michel Carly, in Simenon, Les années secrétes). Maigret ha spesso indagato, soprattutto all’inizio della serie, al di fuori del suo naturale territorio parigino. La Vandea infatti è il luogo d’indagine di tre romanzi che oggi vi proponiamo. 
«Le paludi… immense distese piatte, tagliate dai canali, con qualche bassa fattoria, delle capanne, come si dice in Vandea, e i mucchi di sterco di vacca che, seccati in blocchetti, servono come combustibile… (La casa del giudice) 
«E’ un peccato signor commissario che voi conosciate il nostro paese in pieno inverno… D’estate, la regione è così piacevole che la gente la chiama la Venezia verde…» (L’ispettore Cadavre) 
«Non arrivava soltanto l’acqua dal cielo, ma quella che cadeva dalle grondaie in grosse gocce fredde, che sgocciolavano sulle porte delle case, lungo i marciapiedi, dove dei ruscelli facevano rumore come dei torrenti» (Maigret ha paura) 

A choice of three novels of the saga, on a particular theme  

Three investigations in Vendée 

"As well as Charente-Maritime, Vendée has been for [Simenon] a fertile soil for writing. Marshes, maritime plains and bocage link him to the same ocean." (Michel Carly, in Simenon, Les années secrètes). Maigret has often investigated, above all at the beginning of the saga, outside of his favourite Parisian territory. Vendée is the investigation field in the three novels we propose today. 
"Marsh… Vast flat areas, crossed with canals, and sometimes low farms, huts as they say in Vendée, and heaps of cow dung that, dried in slabs, is used for heating." (The Judge's House)
"It's too bad, Chief inspector, that you have to experience our countryside in winter… In summer the area is so pretty that people call it the green Venice…" (Inspector Cadaver) 
"There was not only the water from the sky, but also the one that was falling down from the gutters in big cold drops, and it was dripping on the house doors, along sidewalks where creeks made a torrent noise." (Maigret is afraid) 

by Simenon Simenon