I am in a fevered state of intellectual activity. My mind is beset by a series of critical, literary and philosophical problems. I find that even the piano keyboard cannot now calm my nerves.
The clues are scattered all about me, here in my study. It is just that I cannot yet see how all the ideas fit together. When I know that, the case will be closed and all that will remain will be for me to write up my findings.
Below is a list of some of the clues I am busy analysing.
1. Sherlock Holmes’ plunge over the falls of Reichenbach in ‘The Final Problem’
2. Franz Liszt’s trip to the Swiss valley of Chamonix in the summer of 1836, on which vacation he was accompanied by Countess Marie d’Agoult, George Sand and her family and Major Adolphe Pictet.
3. The name ‘Mr Fellows’.
4. The concept of the empty house.
5. The figure of Hamlet on the castle walls.
6. The train journey from London to Canterbury.
7. The difference between the abstract and the concrete.
Some of these clues might turn out not to be clues at all; the sole purpose of others might be to lead the critic astray. This is something that I will have to contend with as I pursue my investigation. And of course, there remains the possibility that amongst these fragments of ideas there lies the one thought that will unlock the whole case.
I shall continue to think.