You can find a lot of information on the famous writers – how they lived and how they created their immortal works. Writing is not easy and is quite time-consuming. When reading an interesting book, the reader usually does not think about the features of the character and lifestyle of the writer, who created it. But some facts of his biography,or the history of a book creation are at times very entertaining and even provocative. Continue reading →
[We are very excited to have Hilda Simpson, a freelance writer and honorary dunce, on board with two fascinating guest posts about famous authors. Hopefully she has fun, and will agree to come back for more. Enjoy!]
What inspired great writers and how they scheduled their working day.
Hemingway wrote standing, Nabokov used the index cards, Vonnegut recharged with scotch and Murakami with sports. We bring you the most interesting evidence of outstanding writers, on how they created a working day that inspired them. Continue reading →
At least once a week, and sometimes more, I think about running away. Granted, I don’t usually get too far into the specifics. But I do wonder, abstractly, what that would actually look like. Just going completely off the grid. No more career, no more fixed responsibilities, no more technology, or even electricity. Well that is precisely what Margaret Grundstein did, which she describes in delightful detail in her memoir Naked in the Woods: My Unexpected Years in a Hippie Commune.
What if you took two of the most beautiful minds known to man, sat them down in a room together, told them to talk about your favorite topic (language & writing), recorded the whole thing, and then turned it into a book. Basically, that is exactly what has happened in Quack This Way. I have had the distinct pleasure of reading several of Garner’s books and seeing him present in person. I have read just about everything David Foster Wallace ever wrote. The very idea of this book made me ecstatic with hope and excitement. I was not disappointed. Continue reading →
If there is one thing I lament in life, it’s the absence of sufficient free reading time. I love to read, but by the time I get all my work done, and chores done, and finish all the other things I have to do, there is precious little time left over for anything else. I read, sure, 10 minutes here, 15 minutes there, but it’s not the luxuriant hour upon gorgeous hour that I crave. So on those rare occasions when I get to take a vacation, I am always excited to finally get caught up on some reading. Continue reading →
Sometimes, when you really love a book, you think “man, I really like this book, I wish I had a million more like it.” I’ve had this feeling here recently with Elena Ferrante’s The Days of Abandonment. So good! But unfortunately, it seems to be uniquely good. It sort of defies comparison. One contributor has described it as Claire Messud’s The Woman Upstairs meets Herman Koch’s The Dinner. So far, I have found that to be very accurate. But unfortunately I have already read both of those books. So now what? Continue reading →
In a recent blog post, I talked about some of the praise this book has received. I know the dangers of the oversell, I do, and I would hate to have someone not read this book for fear that it could not possibly live up to the hype I am heaping upon it, but this book was, seriously, front to back, page by page, sentence by sentence, one of the best novels I can remember reading. And you know how much I read. More than a book a week, all year every year. And this one belongs near the top. A star is born. A new favorite. Continue reading →
Not all 300+ page books are created equal. Sometimes they feel like a chore. Sometimes they take forever to finish. Sometimes we abandon them. But not Karen Joy Fowler’s We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves. It felt like a dream. Within pages, I knew I was already sorry it was not longer. That I would never want it to end. I couldn’t stop reading. I didn’t want to read anything else. She had my undivided attention. Continue reading →
What a strange, dark, beautiful world Kathryn Davis has created in her novel Duplex. And the best part is how it sneaks up on you. Everything is all perfectly normal, but then there is, almost in passing, a sorcerer. And robots. And fairies. Horsewomen. Aquanats. But subtly, almost like you’re the strange one for seeing anything out of the ordinary. And you find yourself questioning whether you’ve seen anything at all. Continue reading →
Just wanted to give a quick shout out to Mark Ferguson’s debut novel, Lost Boys Symphony. I loved it, read it at a break-neck pace, could not put it down. It would be difficult to review in any detail without some serious spoilers. The writing itself is very good. It involves time travel, which is one of my favorite artistic devices/concepts. He goes into greater depth in terms of addressing how time travel and varying versions of reality would impact thought and memory.