The series launched in 2017 wi ...more
- Karl Ove Knausgaard, Inadvertent
The second book published in the Windam-Campbell and Yale Press series 'Why I Write'. This short book is the lecture Knausgaard gave at the 2017 Windam-Campbell Pr ...more
“[Vincent Van Gogh] was on fire, driven by an intense will to communicate his inner world to the outer one, but the resistance was too great, the language he had access to was incapable of expressing it. But his will was as wild as it was blind, little by little the distance was whittled away, until he produced his final ...more
"Literature is not primarily a place for truths, it is the space truths play out." 2
"... literature by its very nature always seeks complexity and ambiguity, and that monologic claims of truth about the world are antiliterary" 12
"When I was a boy I read an enormous quantity of books, my sole object being to get away from the reality I was living in -- in other words, pure and simple escapism. "15
"The mere fact that he knew what he liked impressed me. I liked what I had been taught t ...more
Read this short book on writing and you just might become, if you aren't already, an instant fan of Karl Ove Knausgård. The quotations below give unguarded insight into the gems included in this lengthy essay. Greatness never came easy for KOK, and the anecdotes in this book prove his dismal failure at first and finally the relevant reasons he finally succeeded in writing meaningful words on the page. It is not surprising that the act of reading was instru ...more
This man is very talented. I’ve watched some videos of him speak on stage. This essay would come to life and would be been a whole different experience if he actually gave it as a speech. Nonetheless i was ...more
Inadvertent was lodged in my head for more than a year. I'm glad to see it lives up to the memory of the first read, and exceeds it.
Original Review: January 2019
The honesty on display here is raw, real, and appreciated. Because as interesting as the highs are—the success stories, breaking out as an author and gaining acolytes—to me, the creative lows are just as fascinating. And Karl Ove Knausgaard doesn’t hold back. He goes into detail about the years that went in between pro ...more
"...I myself was so removed from the world, I was never really in it - perhaps because I had once benefited from protecting myself against it, and had never come out of my defensive position - and in literature I had found a way in. That is why presence and closeness were always what I sought there." (36)
Inadvertent is the second of the Windham-Campbell lectures that I have read, the first being Patti Smith’s Devotion – an equally beautiful meditation on the art and interiority of the writing li...more
Not long ago, I have read My Struggle by Knausgaard and I can say that it wasn't my cup of tea -if I might say- I couldn't even complete the first book! But after I read Inadvertent by the same author, I can say that this man can surely bring out the best of him when you just simply ask him: Why do you write?
The writing was simple yet connects to the reader instantly! Karl makes you feel as if you both knew each other for a very long time, sitting in a cosy café, talkin ...more
I think this would actually be a good first book if you've never read this author.
Lots of cool KOK anecdotes including his attempt to watch Game of Thrones.
I can't think of anything negative to say about this!
Knausgaard is one of those writers who I have read lots about, in particular his Seasons Quartet. I have read at least one long form interview with him and he certainly seemed like an interesting enough character, but this is the first time I have got round to reading his work.
I enjoyed the way he captured the feel and mood of his childhood reading experiences, the way he would get immersed and lost in comic books for days and in particular his memories of reading Ursula K. Le Guin and the music ...more
I haven't read all of the volumes of My Struggle but I would like to. Yes, he's very hyped but there is something very special about this writer too.
Thanks for letting us in too, sir.
"The reason this text is so temporizing and evasive is of course that I don’t quite know why I write, nor quite what writing is. I don’t think anyone really does, to be honest, at least not in such a way that it can be fully accounted for. Whom is one addressing w...more
There is no one answer, of course. In a series of attempts, or in French, assays, he works his way around the question. Only inadvertently, Knausgaard says, is how writers achieve their ends. If you know exactly where you think you want to go and precisely to get there…then you don’t get it.
I found myself deeply fascinated by what he explained, as he tried to successfully describe why he writes, and found this tiny book full of so much insight to be a revelation and sadly, much too short!
As someone who has tried to write throughout my life, faced self-doubt and crippling block, most of the time self-inflic ...more
Karl Ove Knausgård (b. 1968) made his literary debut in 1998 with the widely acclaimed novel Out of the World, which was a great critical and commercial success and won him, as the first debut novel ever, The Norwegian Critics' Prize. He then went on to write six autobiographical novels, titled My S ...more