I have the best friends. Dearest darling Clovia sent me Mr Clement Lapins.

They are like perfect little rêveurs, they even came with the scarves!*


*The hardcore circus fans wear red scarves.

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I am all reading & writing & very little arithmetic around here lately, so in lieu of actual blog content, here is a peek at the latest additions to the ever-growing to-read pile:

The Thin Man is my last Hammett novel left to read, sadly, though I have plenty of short stories to crawl into afterward. I’ve never had a literary crush the way I’m crushing on Dashiell Hammett right now. His prose makes my toes curl.

Also, this pile of books is sitting upon my iPad 2 cover. My iPad 2 is still in China, as far as I know. The cover is lovely, though.

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flax-golden tales: ideas


Where do you get your ideas? people ask, as though they want the address of a store where they can buy Ideas in bulk, wrapped in plastic for durability.

With “IDEAS!” in eye-catching lettering on the package and a 40% discount.

But as far as I know, there is no such store.

So the inquirers are always disappointed by my response.

And truly, I don’t get my ideas anywhere. They find me.

They sneak in through windows and wait for me on street corners.

They hide at the bottoms of teacups and in between glasses of wine.

They harass me in the moments before sleep, curling up on my pillow like demanding cats and whispering in my ears.

They grow like weeds in my head and there is no escaping them.

About flax-golden tales. Photo by Carey Farrell. Text by Erin Morgenstern.

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links & a kitten in a box

Two (2!) ways you can give money for Japan relief and get cool things in the process:

Kitten in a box:

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i dreamt i went to manderley again

Okay, adventure recount time, finally! Only about a week overdue.

Last week we went down to NYC for a couple of days.

We went to see Sleep No More. Twice. Because I knew as soon as they announced the NYC run that once would not be enough. (Twice was not enough, either.)

For those of you new to the blog: I am completely, utterly obsessed with Sleep No More. I went four times when they did it up here in Brookline in Fall ’09-Winter ’10. It is immersive Shakespearean Hitchcockian wonderment and if you are in New York or able to get there, stop reading and go get tickets. I’m serious. They recently extended their run through the end of April, and I’m keeping my crossables crossed that they’ll end up going through May when I’ll be back down there, because I would go again in a heartbeat.

This production is similar to the Brookline one but different at the same time. The space is sprawling in comparison to the abandoned school from Brookline, which made it more of a maze. It was easier to get lost, which was fabulous.

The first night, I brought my agent & my editor along. I have a tendency to babble about Sleep No More & Punchdrunk and how inspiring it was when I was revising THE NIGHT CIRCUS, and of course it’s difficult to describe properly so I was thrilled for them to be able to actually experience it for themselves. Considering some of the adjectives used after the fact, I think they liked it.

I wasn’t entirely certain it would be as magical, having seen it so many times in a different space, but it was. I danced with witches and Duncan whispered in my ear. I was given a locket to keep me safe before being pushed, Narnia-style, through the back of a wardrobe. I wandered through dimly lit cemeteries and mazes made of branches and I spent ages in a detective office, reading files and incoming mail.

It is the closest thing I have ever found to walking into a dream.

And I am, of course, very fond of dreams.

There are no proper words to describe my love & giddiness & gratitude to the people who create such things & bring them to life.


And because I am all about themes and hotels, I decided I wanted to stay somewhere appropriate, so I googled “nyc art deco hotel” and stumbled upon the Chatwal, which happened to be running an amazing winter rate at the time so that decision was easy.

This is my fantasy hotel. Like, someone went into my brain and asked “what would Erin want in a hotel?” and came up with something like an updated, intimate, less violent version of Kubrick’s Overlook. The lobby, pictured below in black & white and teased last week in color, just *glows* in this sleek, timeless, welcoming way. It’s an art deco oasis just off of Times Square and I was disappointed only that I had to leave. (And that I couldn’t spend more time in the shower. Best shower ever. Rainfall surrounded by darkness and sparkles. Seriously.)

Each room has a copy of The Great Gatsby, that’s how wonderful this place is.

Suffice it to say, I had a lovely mini-holiday.

Also, the entire trip may have counted as flavor research for my next book. Possibly.

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monday miscellany

  • It is the first day of Spring!
  • It is snowing.
  • Seriously.

  • It is also Bucket’s birthday!

  • Bucket is 8 years old today.
  • She has no comment on her birthday snow.
  • She also has the same birthday as Bach, Gary Oldman, and Twitter.
  • We (not including Bucket) spent yesterday in South Boston for the St. Patrick’s Day parade.
  • That was festive & cold but at least the sun was out.
  • It’s snowing.
  • Tessa’s yelling in the window, I’m not sure if the yelling is directed at me or at the snow.
  • True confession: the snow is actually rather pretty.
  • The write-up of last week’s adventure is coming, likely tomorrow, but for today I am going to curl up with a cup of tea and watch the snow while singing birthday songs to Bucket.
  • Happy Spring!(?)
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flax-golden tales: the practical concerns of painted elephants: a dialogue


the practical concerns of painted elephants: a dialogue

— The elephant is dreaming of the circus.

— No.

— No?

— That’s not a parasol, it’s an umbrella.

— What’s the difference?

— A parasol is decorative, or for blocking unwanted sun. That’s an umbrella.

— Then what’s the elephant doing with an umbrella?

— It’s a preventative measure. He’s concerned that the rain might wash him off the wall.

About flax-golden tales. Photo by Carey Farrell. Text by Erin Morgenstern.

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photo tease & facebook

Haven’t had time to write up my adventure report properly, but in the meantime here’s a photographic tease to give you some flavor:

Also, I have a facebook author page! The lovelies at Doubleday have done a marvelous job setting it up & at some point soon I’ll have access to update it & comment & such myself, but not just yet. (Tim, I like you, too! I just can’t tell you over there. You probably already knew, though.)

Will be updating the website over the next few days, to add more circus info & such. And the art deco adventure report is coming, I promise.

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night circus cover

I’m on a train surrounded by fog & trees. I’ve had an adventurous couple of days which I will describe in detail later, but for now, in case you haven’t seen it elsewhere in the wilds of the internet, this is the cover for THE NIGHT CIRCUS:


I said when I first saw a concept version it that it is nothing I ever would have pictured but I utterly adore it and this polished version is even lovelier. The art is by Helen Musselwhite, an amazing artist who works in hand cut paper. (I am in love with her floating island domes.)

And paper art is truly appropriate for the book.

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early night circus, uk version

I always expect Saturdays to be boring mail days but sometimes they surprise me.

Look what just arrived:


Bound proof of THE NIGHT CIRCUS from my wonderful UK publisher, Harvill Secker. They call them bound proofs, which is nice & easy & doesn’t involve wondering what ARC stands for, precisely.

The cover makes me swoon:

It’s an abbreviated version of the opening lines & the stars are shiny. And they’re all stars but the fancy camera had to go and blur most of them. That’s okay, it looks dramatic this way.

And this is the back:

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