Articles by Sonya Chung

February 27, 2012

RIP William Gay 3

I am very sad to report that William Gay, whom we featured in our “Post-40 Bloomers” series last fall, died on Friday, at the age of 68.  From Clarksville Online: “At first, I would send a story to the New Yorker and when it came back, I’d send it to The Atlantic, or Harper’s or […]

January 30, 2012

Nine Stories, 16 Years in the Making: Post-40 Bloomer Daniel Orozco 6

Orientation is not about “alienation,” modern-day or otherwise, nor about the effects of a particular cultural transition or economic decline; it’s about loneliness. About the awful, persistent distance between you and me, between me and me, between each of us and the spiritual-whatever in the universe; all of which keeps us wondering what the hell this life is about, and how we will survive it. This seems an important distinction to me, and what has allowed Orozco’s work – some of it 16 years-old – to debut with full emotional resonance.

January 24, 2012

Susie DeFord’s Dogs of Brooklyn 0

Poets, dog-lovers, urban-dwellers, and really, everyone — check out poet and dog-trainer Susie DeFord‘s heartfelt and keen-eyed new book of poems, Dogs of Brooklyn.  Says Vijay Seshadri, DeFord’s collection is full of “wonderful poetic investigations into the life of Brooklyn’s dogs, into their habits, their idiosyncrasies, and their secret longings.”

January 10, 2012

Staff Writer Sonya Chung at Tin House 0

At the Tin House blog, I write about my literary education in independent bookstores  Also, my piece about James Salter appears in Tin House‘s current issue.

December 30, 2011

Post-40 Bloomers: Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa, The Last Leopard 4

One indisputable factor that deprived us of more opportunities to luxuriate in Lampedusa’s gifts was a diagnosis of lung cancer at the age of 60. The diagnosis came just a few months after he finished the novel, two publisher rejections already in hand, a third which would arrive weeks before he died in July of that year.

November 15, 2011

On Spinach and the National Book Awards 12

I want to live in a world – and I believe we’re closer than we think – where “the reading public” consumes, likes, and engages with many different kinds of literary nourishment; and where writers, teachers, and critics trust and even expect readers to do so.

November 5, 2011

Poetry Walk in the Bronx 0

Don’t miss Jon Cotner‘s “Poem Forest” at the NY Botanical Gardens Nov 4-5 and Nov 11-12, 12-4:30. It’s a self-guided tour that promises “a new kind of poetry experience, as well as a new kind of walking experience. Poet-walker Jon Cotner has fused lines selected from 2500 years of nature poetry with Thain Forest’s autumnal landscape.” […]

October 28, 2011

Post-40 Bloomers: The Stories of William Gay 2

While Gay himself might prize being considered among the Southern greats, his stories of desolation and beauty — brimming, yes, with the familiar Gothic elements of violence and darkness of hearts — feed and trouble our souls, whether or not we come to the text already knowing the “timeless tolling of whippoorwills, both bitter and reassuring,” or have passed ugly nights in a honkytonk, or keep a rifle or a pistol under the bed.

September 29, 2011

Post-40 Bloomers: Yvvette Edwards and A Cupboard Full of Coats 4

“I suppose I qualify as a late bloomer but I don’t feel like one. The term has connotations of stagnation, finally followed by some kind of transformation. I’d probably prefer to equate myself to a fine wine or good cheese, something that takes time, passion, and dedication to mature perfectly.”

September 26, 2011

Post-40 Bloomers: “Late” According to Whom? 45

I myself am hesitant to use the word “late” (or “older,” for that matter) in reference to writers over 40. Late relative to what and according to whose definition of early or on-time?