In her early days Jane had once had a book of essays published and had somehow managed to become a member of a certain literary society of which she still sometimes attended meetings. These usually took place in the evenings, and were another excuse for Jane to absent herself from parish duties and to stay a night with Prudence at her flat. This particular meeting was to be a rather special one; it was the centenary of the birthday of an author whose works Jane had never read, but who had died recently enough to be remembered by many persons still alive. This seemed a good reason for a literary society to be gathering together, as Jane explained to Nicholas, who had protested, though mildly enough, at her missing a meeting of the Parochial Church Council.
'I shouldn't do any good there,' said Jane guiltily, remembering her intrusion into the choir vestry a few weeks ago of which she had told him nothing.
'I should have thought the time could me more profitably spent in encouraging young authors rather than in celebrating dead ones,' Nicholas declared.
'But it does encourage them,' Jane said. 'They imagine that one day such a meeting might be held about them, and I suppose they wonder what will be remembered, and hope it won't be something they'd prefer to be forgotten.'
from Jane and Prudence, by Barbara Pym