The Bell Jar- Book Review

the bell jarWhy does this book speak to me so?  Sylvia Plath’s The Bell Jar.  The book begins so light, so funny, a young girl in New York living any girl’s dream.  She wants to see it all, she wants to experience everything.  Plath perfectly captures what it’s like to see the world in that stage of our lives, full of energy and hope and excitement for the future, but also unsure in a way.  Brave and scared at once.  Right on that line between innocence and loss of innocence: “This dress was cut so queerly I couldn’t wear any sort of bra under it, but that didn’t matter much as I was skinny as a boy and barely rippled, and I liked feeling almost naked on the hot summer nights.” (p. 8). Continue reading

That Titular Moment

status-anxietyYou know that moment in a book when you realize where its title came from?  Sometimes it’s just a catch-all theme.  Sometimes it emerges as an idea.  Sometimes it’s an actual line in the book.  For some reason, I always find this moment exciting.  It makes me giddy.  I will often mark it with one of my ever-present Post-Its, just so I can come back and relive the moment later.  That’s how much I love it. Continue reading

“No Matter the Wreckage,” Poems by Sarah Kay- Book Review

sarah kay no matter the wreckageSome reviews, some books, some writers, I just feel inadequate to the task.  Sarah Kay has inspired me here, and I feel kind of speechless as a result.  As someone for whom poetry can sometimes feel like an almost spiritual experience, I don’t feel worthy or capable of doing the book justice.  Yet I feel compelled to say something. Continue reading

Reading Is My Only Joy

Reading is my only joy.  Reading is my only joy. Reading is my only joy.  Reading is my only joy.  Reading is my only joy.  Reading is my only joy. Reading is my only joy.  Reading is my only joy.  Reading is my only joy.  Reading is my only joy. Reading is my only joy.  Reading is my only joy.  Reading is my only joy.  Reading is my only joy. Reading is my only joy.  Reading is my only joy.  Reading is my only joy.  Reading is my only joy. Reading is my only joy.  Reading is my only joy.  Reading is my only joy.  Reading is my only joy. Reading is my only joy.  Reading is my only joy.  Reading is my only joy.  Reading is my only joy. Reading is my only joy.  Reading is my only joy.  Reading is my only joy.  Reading is my only joy. Reading is my only joy.  Reading is my only joy.  Continue reading

The Sense of Style: by Steve Pinker – Book Review

sense of styleI have a confession to make.  I’m one of those dorky people who reads grammar/writing style guides for fun (as if that comes as a surprise to any of our readers here).  And so, it should further come as no surprise that I found Steven Pinker’s The Sense of Style: The Thinking Person’s Guide to Writing in the 21st Century! to be a sheer delight. Continue reading

Summer Dad

It’s hard being a summer dad.  While the rest of your family is in vacation mode, your life stays exactly the same.  Mornings are the worst, waking to a silent house, getting ready like usual while everyone else sleeps in as long as they want.  No goodbye, no out-the-door kisses.  Nights are bad too.  Having slept in, they are ready to party: one more snack, pop in a movie, “why go to bed, we have NOTHING to do tomorrow?!?!?”  Wish I could say the same. Continue reading

Surprising Facts About Bestselling Authors

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

Inspiring Stories About Famous Authors- Guest Post

[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

“Naked in the Woods” – by: Margaret Grundstein- Book Review

GrundsteinCompF.inddAt 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.

Continue reading

“Quack This Way”- David Foster Wallace and Bryan Garner Talk Language and Writing

DFW-Quack-This-WayWhat 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