Writing for writing’s sake 

I am reading “When I was old” by Georges Simenon at the moment.

When Simenon was 57 he began, for two or three years, to write in notebooks. He shared his private thoughts about life, his observations, writing, being a novelist, how he wrote his books, and similar things.

But most of all he was “writing for writing’s sake”.

In other words, he did not have the pressure or anxiety of writing a novel and doing the work that he did. He was engaging in the pleasure he gleaned from writing and notebooks.

Interestingly, he says early in the book that “I am a novelist, not a writer”. I would like to know how he perceives the difference. Perhaps he will deal with this later in the book.

It is a fascinating look into the life and mind of a fascinating man, the Belgian novelist Georges Simenon.