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This blog makes liberal use of AB's journals, letters, travel notes, and other sources.

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Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Almost perfect

Thursday, March 19th., Les Sablons.

I thought this evening that if only I was installed definitely at Fontainebleau I should be perfectly happy. Difficult to realise that even there something (undiscoverable) would still be lacking, and that I cannot ever be happier than I am now and here - in perfect working order and in good health and with my wits.

I have never been in better creative form than I am today. A complete scene of the novel (1,700 words) this morning in two and a half hours, and 1,000 words of an article on the theatre before dinner. Beautiful cold weather. Four miles in the forest this morning; two miles stroll this afternoon. I want more books here, not to read but merely to see them around me. I read an extract from Brunetiere's criticism in the Deux Mondes of "Une Vie" - cold, unappreciative, very niggard even in modified praise. This made me more content with some of the reviews of my 'big' books. I suppose that some day a collected edition of my novels will be issued - similar to that of de Maupassant's now appearing. I hope that when it does I shall be neither dead nor in a madhouse.

Additionally for March 19th., see 'G. & S. is dead'

"The Gondoliers" at Prince's last night. I thought that this was better than it proved to be. There are at least half a dozen magnificent tunes in it, and beyond those - nothing. Immense longueurs in the action, especially towards the end of each act, and the 'climaxic' explanation on the other hand is much too hurried. The fun is merely childish. Also it is 'healthy' fun. The one joke of the gondolier about taking off his cap or anything else in reason 'seemed quite shocking'. It was all far too respectable. The packed audience was also stodgy and ugly. In fact you wondered where the people came from - so dull were they. However, the applause was much less than it used to be. The whole affair dull save for the magnif. tunes. I don't want to see any more G. & S. Fundamentally the thing is dead.

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