Simple Passion

One of my favorite muses is the ecrivain Annie Ernaux.

I’m re-reading her memoir, Simple Passion. Here is how it ends:

“When I was a child, luxury was fur coats, evening dresses, and villas by the sea.
Later on, I thought it meant leading the life of an intellectual. Now I feel that it is also being able to live out a passion for a man or a woman.”

I have not kept track of the number of times I have read Simple Passion. It is one of these books, like a fine wine, that you sip and never get tired of.

This time I went back to Simple Passion because I wanted some inspiration regarding the passion between Annie and Niko, two characters in the novel I am writing.

Ernaux’s memoir is about her obsessive passion for a man, its signs, her description of it, how she lived it and what it meant to her as a writer.

The memoir is scattered with references to her awareness of writing. What I love about Annie Ernaux’s writing is that it is clean and sharp and deep.

“Quite often I felt I was living out this passion in the same way I would have written a book: the same determination to get every single scene right, the same minute attention to detail. I could even accept the thought of dying providing I had lived this passion through to the very end –without actually defining “to the very end” – in the same way I could die in a few months’ time after finishing this book.”

I like what she says about getting every scene right and minute attention to detail.