May 21, 2012
by Amy Shearn
Martha Gellhorn’s pen pals included Eleanor Roosevelt, Maxwell Perkins, H.G. Wells, her husband (later, ex-) Ernest Hemingway, and Peggy Schutze, my maternal grandmother.
May 18, 2012
The bond formed around a favorite novel is one of shared immersive experience, usually open to impossibly wide interpretations. When we meet someone else who’s “been there,” there’s a biting urge to know exactly what the other person saw, what scenes remain strongest in her memory, what crucial knowledge or insight was retrieved, and what her experience reveals or changes about our own?
May 15, 2012
It’s an age-old complaint, but things don’t really seem to be changing. You can seek out literature from just about anywhere — and now it’s easier than any previous point in history — but it’s a hell of a lot harder to bring it into the conversation.
May 7, 2012
by R.B. Moreno
With the close of the post-Bolaño decade, it seems that the tide of the author’s original works is finally ebbing. New Directions’ latest release, much to my delight and that of other genre boundary-watchers, is The Secret of Evil, a thin collection of fictions that occasionally read as essays. Or is it the other way around?
May 7, 2012
I spent years feeling like a failure before I’d even started writing, all because I was terrified of producing a cliché. If only I could have written a World War II epic with a chose your own adventure twist.
May 2, 2012
If my father could not directly invite me to connect with him, he could find more oblique ways to bring the two of us together: he could give me reference books as gifts, bribe me to open the books he collected.
April 25, 2012
Tiger Lit has never been so popular. Look at the number of award-winning fictions in the last decade in which tigers escape from zoos. All kinds of besotted, bombed-out, starving, mangy, metaphoric and misunderstood man-eaters are now on the loose.
April 25, 2012
by Bill Morris
The overused word “unfilmable” should be banished from the lexicon.
April 17, 2012
Belief in surviving POWs “could be regarded as the closest thing we have to a national religion.” It is still difficult for me to read the questions that Gordo’s parents typed on the flyer: “Did you know our son?” “Which camp was he in?” “How was he treated?” “Do you know if our son received any of our mail?”
April 16, 2012
“Inventing a character in order to understand historical facts is like fabricating evidence. Or rather, it’s like planting false proof at a crime scene where the floor is already strewn with incriminating evidence.”