Episode 04: Elizabeth Cox

Books by Elizabeth Cox

Books Mentioned on The Spine

  • Miss Minerva and William Green Hill by Frances Boyd Calhoun
  • Love and Will by Rollo May
  • Memories, Dreams, Reflections by Carl Jung
  • Man and his Symbols Carl Jung
  • The Portable Jung 
  • Eleven Kinds of Loneliness by Richard Yates
  • Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
  • Two Essays on Analytical Psychology by Carl Jung
  • Essays on Contemporary Events by Carl Jung
  • The Practice of Psychotherapy: Essays on the Psychology of the Transference and other Subjects by Carl Jung
  • Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky
  • Van Gogh’s Letters
  • Van Gogh’s Ear by Bernadette Murphy
  • Ancient Light by John Banville

Writers Mentioned

  • William Faulkner
  • Marcel Proust
  • Margaret Atwood
  • Robert Penn Warren
  • Anais Nin
  • Cormac McCarthy
  • Tomas Merton
  • Rumi

Memorable Quotes

  • "I remember in the sixth grade reading Pride and Prejudice and was blown away by it. Maybe that was the start."
  • "Whenever I get stuck (not in life, but in writing) I read Robert Penn Warren — anything, stories, poems, novels; and though I do not know how clarity occurs, whenever I read him, immersing myself into the way he uses language, I become unstuck."
  • “When I began writing, Faulkner and Proust made me soar.”
  • “I have learned to honor loneliness.”
  • "The hardest thing I’ve ever done is turn loneliness into solitude.”
  • “I’d just begun writing and wasn’t sure I could do it. And [Love and Will by Rollo May] pushed me in a way at that particular time…I needed it at that time. And it talked about a level of living that I had not lived. …More intentional and more aware of the possibilities within my life."
  • On reading Carl Jung: "It’s like chocolate pie to me. …I begin to move into the unconscious in ways that make it hard to live my life. I love it."
  • On Carl Jung: "A lot of people think of him as almost crazy but, not me!"
  • On the stories in Eleven Kinds of Loneliness by Richard Yates: "They are the most perfect nuggets I have ever read."
  • "Van Gogh to me is someone who lived in a different reality, and since it’s different, we call it crazy."
  • “I walk around and try to…see through [Van Gogh’s] eyes because he experiences color. I think that’s why his work is so profound.”
  • About Van Gogh: "I want to see like that to distraction. I don’t mind what it does to me. I want to live in that way of seeing with a kind of intensity."
  • About passionately pursuing a strain in your reading life, which she says is like mining for gold: “I don’t think you can get to that without loneliness, and I have learned to honor loneliness. I don’t mean wishing for someone to be around… But there is, when you move into this, you can’t share it with many people. And you want to. And it either makes people uncomfortable and they don’t want to go there."
  • “The hardest thing I’ve ever done is to turn loneliness into solitude."
  • “Loneliness and yearning are probably very close together. Different from being comfortable or satisfied, which I think is very dangerous. Loss is a great teacher. And loneliness is, too. And it’s not a depressed thing…I think because I honor loneliness, I wake up with joy. I wake up, and I love the day, and I don’t always love it all the way through…no matter what’s going on in my life."
Elizabeth Cox