From An Unnatural Pursuit, 25 November 1983:
'I finished the play at six this morning, having worked through half the night. I’d also worked through three packages of cigarettes and half a bottle of malt whisky. But the main thing is that it’s finished. Ole.
I numbered the pages, packed and shaped them into a completed-looking pile, toasted myself with a further gulp of whisky and a few more cigarettes, gloated. This, for me, is the only moment of pure happiness I ever experience in the playwriting business…. '
Simon Gray kept a diary during the rehearsals and performance of the original production of The Common Pursuit at the Lyric Hammersmith, directed by Harold Pinter. An Unnatural Pursuit is published by Faber & Faber.
Simon also recorded the trials and tribulations of two productions of The Common Pursuit in Los Angeles and New York in his 1988 diary How's That For Tellin' em, Fat Lady?, also published by Faber & Faber.