Wednesday, March 30, 2011


Mitchell worked on the novel, which was originally to be called either “Tomorrow Is Another Day” or “Tote the Weary Load,” in fits and starts from 1925 to 1935. She wrote on blank newsprint and composed the book out of order, beginning with the last chapter and picking up other sections as her mood suited her. The finished chapters she put in individual manila envelopes, sometimes with grocery lists scrawled on them, and stored in a closet. Very few people saw them or even knew what she was doing. —NYT

[Side note: Reading this, I was fixated on that title, Tote the Weary Load...had I heard that one before? then I realized I was thinking about Toad the Wet Sprocket (apparently still around).]

As it turned out, there was a lot more than just that neat stack. "They brought me literally bins and drawers and wire baskets," Pietsch says. "Just heaps of pages. There was no order to them." He went back to New York City with a duffel bag full of them. —Lev Grossman, Time

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