Recently I read an old penny-paperback of The Grapes of Wrath.  I was about three-quarters of the way through when I left it on a plane – I hope someone picked it up and read it.  So I bought another copy of the same edition as it had a foreword by Steinbeck’s widow Elaine.

She describes delightfully the many ways and places he used to create a perfect writing space, some more successful than others. In the coming weeks I will feature half a dozen.  

Here, early in their relationship, he shows Elaine the house he was born in and where he began writing, prompting the obvious question. 

‘”That’s the room I was born in.”  Then he pointed to the window above and said, “That’s the room I wrote in.” I asked, “When did you begin to write?” And John said almost in wonder, “I don’t remember a time I didn’t write.”‘ 


Source: Elaine Steinbeck, Foreword, The Grapes of Wrath (London: Mandarin Paperback, 1995), p. i

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