Literary Clockwork

Jul 16 2013 @ 8:17pm

Christian Marclay’s 24-hour video collage “The Clock” consists of film clips in which people consult timepieces at each of a day’s 1,440 minutes:

Taking a page from Marclay’s playbook, The Guardian has invited readers to create a literary version of “The Clock”, which is set to debut at the Edinburgh International Book Festival this August. Some examples:

00:00:00 It is midnight. The rain is beating on the windows. I am calm. All is sleeping. Nevertheless I get up and go to my desk. I can’t sleep. — Molloy, Samuel Beckett

4:50:00 Even the hands of his watch and the hands of all the thirteen clocks were frozen. They had all frozen at the same time, on a snowy night, seven years before, and after that it was always ten minutes to five in the castle. — The 13 Clocks, James Thurber

11:45:00 “I will tell you the time,” said Septimus, very slowly, very drowsily, smiling mysteriously. As he sat smiling at the dead man in the grey suit the quarter struck, the quarter to twelve. — Mrs. Dalloway, Virginia Woolf

13:00:00 It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen. — 1984, George Orwell

19:00:00 It was seven o’clock when we got into the coupé with him and started for Long Island. [...] So we drove on toward death through the cooling twilight. — The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald

Previous Dish on Marclay’s clock here.