Wednesday, July 30, 2008
But what we also witnessed, over and over, was an almost perfect miscommunication between fathers and daughters—men, bright eyed and grinning with excitement (lookit them stallions fight!) while their little sweethearts lost pink plastic sandals in the muck. A lot of tears, but not a lot of sympathy, not even from me. OMG Ponies indeed. Books are always better than the real thing. At least that’s how I feel right now, cooling my well scrubbed heels in a waterman’s cottage that looks like Dr. Caligari’s vacation home.
Having an awesome time, writing a little, reading even less. The naps are powerful, profound.
Friday, July 25, 2008
got a big, cold rejection yesterday, but one that occurred at the same time that I received a really swell attaboy from a reader, so the picking-up-and-dusting-off process went very smoothly.
Sunday, July 20, 2008
done finished that Down River. not as much action as King of Lies, lots of painfully revealing discussions, and then a bunch of neat stuff at the end. one character I thought for sure was going to die, but it didn’t happen. so that’s cool.
bookmarks. I will no longer use uninteresting bookmarks, like bookstore receipts or pieces of paper or leather designed to be bookmarks. I have a pack of drink coasters with British sports and beer logos, and those work great.
bookmarked in this photo--Christy Zink's story, "Taking Cover," from Electric Grace; Still more Fiction by Washington Area Women, and page 23 of ANS's Yellow Medicine. no, i do not plan to read these books simultaneously.
Thursday, July 17, 2008
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
Too bad so many people are rising to The New Yorker’s bait. New Yorker cartoons can’t provoke for the same reason they fail to amuse. They’re just too obvy.
My resentment for the New Yorker goes a long way back and has everything to do with its influence on literary fiction, especially during the ‘80s. Someone once gave me a stack of New Yorker mags (hey you write fiction, you’ll like this pile of white man sorrow), and one of the issues had some music doodad insert that tweeted out a holiday song, like a musical birthday card. On New Year’s Day (we may have been under the weather) the chime went off on its own, so naturally D grabbed a large knitting needle and pounded it through the stack like a stake through a vampire’s heart. That’s my favorite New Yorker story.
Saturday, July 12, 2008
urrg. the writing is coming slooooowly, and by slowly I mean three to five word clumps. not even sentences. I think the problem is that I’ve entered a very plot-ty area and I am resisting its obligations.
so I write a bit, then take a break and read a little of John Hart’s Down River. Don’t ask me how the book is, you can’t trust my opinion. (So far the main character is having a lot of cryptic convos with old men. Oh, and he’s recollecting his painful youth) I read Hart because I noticed while reading his breakthrough novel King of Lies that I make a lot of the same writing choices he does, so much so that I can almost predict what the main character is about to notice or reason out. Content wise, I have nothing in common with Hart. And his characters are incredibly humorless and daddy-conflicted. But there is something eerily familiar about the rhythms, the imagery, and the attention. Maybe I’ve read all the same writers he has but came away with a sunnier disposition. Flannery O’Connor was funny, man.
Thursday, July 10, 2008
Friday, July 4, 2008
4 or 5 years ago response to my fiction was a little more serious, a little more practiced, a little more practical. More about what I’d accomplished than what the reader experienced. Even my rejections are more gut level: an editor recently wrote that my submission “just didn’t do it for me. I don’t know why.”
I’m working on a theory, and it doesn’t have much to do with me.