from William Faulkner on Horseback in Written Lives by Javier Marias

There is certainly no doubting his ability to lose himself in his writing or his reading. His father had got him the position at the power station after he was dismissed from his previous job as a post office clerk at the University of Mississippi. Apparently one of the lecturers there, quite reasonably, complained: the only way he could get his letters was by rummaging around by the garbage can at the back door, where the unopened mail bags all too often ended up. Faulkner did not like having his reading interrupted, and the sale of stamps fell alarminbgly: by way of explanation, Faulkner told his family that he was not prepared to keep getting up to wait on people at the window and having to be beholden to any son-of-a-bitch who had two cents to buy a stamp.

translated by Margaret Jull Costa