Friday 17 October

It is disgraceful. I did run up stairs thinking I'd make time to enter that astounding fact—the last words 
of the last page of Mrs Dalloway; but was interrupted. Anyhow I did them a week ago yesterday. "For there she 
was." & I felt glad to be quit of it, for it has been a strain the last weeks, yet fresher in the head; with less I mean 
of the usual feeling that I've shaved through, & just kept my feet on the tight rope. I feel indeed rather more fully 
relieved of my meaning than usual—whether this will stand when I re-read is doubtful. But in some ways this 
book is a feat; finished without break from illness, wh. is an exception; & written really, in one year; & finally, 
written from the end of March to the 8th of October without more than a few days break for writing journalism. 
So it may differ from the others. Anyhow, I feel that I have exorcised the spell wh. Murry & others said I had 
laid myself under after Jacob's Room. The only difficulty is to hold myself back from writing others. My cul-de-
sac, as they called it, stretches so far, & shows such vistas. I see already The Old Man.

But enough, enough—yet of what should I write here except my writing? Odd how conventional 
morality always encroaches. One must not talk of oneself &c; one must not be vain &c. Even in complete 
privacy these ghosts slip between me & the page. But I must here break off to go to the post, down that 
wonderful lamplit street, which has become more lovely more unreal through my double windows. And I sit 
shielded within. This house is now perfect. The studio the best study I've ever had.

The thought of Katherine Mansfield comes to me—as usual rather reprehensibly—first wishing she 
could see Southampton Row, thinking of the dulness of her death, lying there at Fontainebleau—an end where 
there was no end, & then thinking yes, if she'd lived, she'd have written on, & people would have seen that I was 
the more gifted—that wd. only have become more & more apparent. Indeed, so I suppose it would. I think of her 
in this way off & on—that strange ghost, with the eyes far apart, & the drawn mouth, dragging herself across her 
room. And Murry married again to a woman who spends an hour in the W.C. & so the Anreps have turned them 
out. Murry whines publicly for a flat in the Adelphi. Thats a sordid page of my life by the way, Murry. But I 
stick to it; K. & I had our relationship; & never again shall I have one like it.

Lytton dined here the other night—a successful evening. Oh I was right to be in love with him 12 or 15 
years ago. It is an exquisite symphony his nature when all the violins get playing as they did the other night; so 
deep, so fantastic. We rambled easily. He is in love again with Philip Ritchie. And hurt, a little; still capable of 
pain; but knows it now ridiculous, which hurts him too. & he feels it. For when I asked if we could help he was 
touched. We talked of his writing, & I think now he will write another book; of mine; of the School of Proust, he 
said; then of Maynard; one side of him detestable; should have married Barbara; grown fat; of Nessa's picture, 
which he may buy (I want to see Nessa at this moment, & she's gone to Norfolk to look at a house, & I hope she 
won't take it, & leave London & Charleston & live till she dies, with her children painting in Norfolk & I here, & 
L. may go to India—thats been brooding over me since I came back & he told me at tea the first afternoon, 
Saturday, how he'd been asked to go by the ILP & wanted very much to go, & take a week off to see 
Hambantota which a little hurt me. But I said to myself this is a side of life I've not lain on. I must face that too. 
Still nothing has been heard, though I still a little dread the mornings post, but this is concealed from L.—if he 
went, it would be after the Election, in Nov. Yes, after the Election, for owing to the defeat of the Govt. in the 
Campbell Case, we are now condemned to a dose of lies every morning: the usual yearly schoolboys wrangle 
has begun. If I were still a feminist, I should make capital out of the wrangle. But I have travelled on—as K.M. 
said to me, she saw me as a ship far out at sea. But K.M. always said affectionate admiring things to me, poor 
woman, whom in my own way I suppose I loved. Human affections are not to be called by very strong, or rather 
very positive names, I think. Heres poor old Jacques writing to me, & Gwen wants to come & see me, after 11 
years: a relationship revived by the art of the pen, across France. I rather dread revivals: partly vanity; you're 
fatter, less beautiful; changed; so self-conscious [?] am I; & then—the effort. Seeing people, now I see them so 
easily, is an effort. Why ——

Phil Baker is standing as a Labour candidate. Irene will have his teeth filed & get him in—(a scrap of 
real dialogue). Did I put down my progress towards Perpetual Immortality (to quote one of Peggy Webling's 
wishes as a child—a Brief I'm doing, or should be doing?) I asked Todd £10 for 1,000 words: she orders 4 
articles at that fee: Harper wishes me (I think) to write an American Browns & Bennetts; & Vogue, (via Dadie) 
is going to take up Mrs Woolf, to boom her: &—&—&—  So very likely this time next year I shall be one of 
those people who are, so father said, in the little circle of London Society which represents the Apostles, I think, 
on a larger scale. Or does this no longer exist? To know everyone worth knowing. I can just see what he meant; 
just imagine being in that position—if women can be. Lytton is: Maynard; Ld Balfour; not perhaps Hardy. 
Which reminds me I ought to dash in Mrs Hardy in a nursing home, having had her tumour cut out; with Miss 
Charlotte Mew. Nothing very exciting, even as a boast not very exciting now. H. remembers your father: did not 
like many people, but was fond of him; talks of him often. Would like to know you. But I cant easily fit into that 
relation; the daughter grateful for old compliments to her father. Yet I should like to see him; to hear him—say 
something. But what? One or two words about a flower, or a view, or a garden chair, perhaps.

(It strikes me that in this book I practise writing; do my scales; yes & work at certain effects. I daresay 
I practised Jacob here,—& Mrs D. & shall invent my next book here; for here I write merely in the spirit—
great fun it is too, & old V. of 1940 will see something in it too. She will be a woman who can see, old V.: 
everything—more than I can I think. But I'm tired now.)