Essays

February 5, 2010

How Do I Get Home? A Profile of Nick Flynn 2

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Flynn navigates murky waters through his elegant language, trying not to blame the map he was given for his apprehension.

February 2, 2010

The Magisterial Goal 27

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Soccer broadcaster Ray Hudson values hyperbole over precision. His quips, spontaneous and unedited, conflating science and art, have gained him a reputation as one of the most notorious announcers in all of sports.

February 1, 2010

‘The woman writes as if the Devil was in her…’ 11

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The anxiety of maintaining the distance and time to write within a romantic relationship continues to plague women (and men alike).

January 19, 2010

The Problem with Prizes (or, Who Cares About the International Booker?) 17

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Ladies and gentlemen, I give you… The Prize Championship Series!

January 15, 2010

Down by the Riverside 6

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Folk music, funerals, and “goodbye to all that.” On reaching across the generational divide.

January 15, 2010

Novels and Unicycles: Writing for Attention 33

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Vanity helps anonymity get dressed in the morning, and anonymity helps vanity forget all the mean things the kids said at recess.

January 12, 2010

Sex, Seriously: James Salter Trumps the Great Male Novelists 26

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It’s been said that “writing about music is like dancing about architecture.” The same might be said for sex, and even more aptly when it comes to writing about writing about sex.

January 7, 2010

In Defense of Editors 23

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Gordon Lish usurped Raymond Carver’s work, and with it, some of his identity. It was traumatic at times for both parties, but in terms of art and aesthetic, wasn’t it worth it?

January 4, 2010

The Perils of Fiction 10

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While writing Drift, I did my best to shut out the ongoing clamor of imagined disapproval and alienation from my family, promising myself to write uncensored. As I got closer to the reality of publication, I realized that the shit was going to hit the fan.

December 30, 2009

Year-End Reflections: The Great and The Good 1

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It’s a thread I sense in most writers I know — that if a good amount of our first-fruit time and energy are going to be spent either in solitude or promoting our own work, we want also to make sure we are not atrophying in our human connectedness.