Literary Links

Here are a few items of interest I found on blogs and news sites:

* Isak discusses and links to an article by a Native American writer who writes of her encounter with Sherman Alexie, an author she both loathed and admired.

* Simply Fred Smith talks about how to balance your day job and writing dreams.

* Novelist Bernice McFadden was headed to Austin for the Black Book Festival and instead ended up with this hilarious travel nightmare story titled "12 Hours of Murphy's Law."

* Fiction author Aimee Bender has a nonfiction piece about failed marriage in the Washington Post Summer Reading section.

* The LA Times interviews Percival Everett about his new novel, I Am Not Sidney Poitier.


  1. Wow. Totally gonna check these out. I'm always a fan of essays about meeting the person you "admire and loathe."

    Just finished "The Mysteries of Pittsburgh" last week. I *met* Michael Chabon and he was wonderful...but reading his essay about writing that book made me want to slug him. Him and his "Pulitzer Prize-winning-I-got-my-MFA-thesis-turned-into-a-national-bestseller-at-age-24-or-whatever-ass."

  2. I really can't stand Aimee Bender. I feel safe to say this out of California where most people would want to kill me if they heard this. But I find her rather trite and just plain dull. But her piece on marriage was decent--a tad overwritten, but okay. Usually I find she has no depth.
    Liked the Fred Smith blog and funny, I had met Erika before at the Nimrod event some years back. She's cool, I like her and her blog is quite informative.
    Looking forward to other links. Superflannel Hero, I read one, or was it two collections of Chabon years ago? Have to say, I don't remember a single story. Found them all well written, slick, but it left me with nothing. I enjoyed the read. But kind of like a beach novel. Not a huge Chabon fan. Smooth. Smooth. But no texture. No emotional pitch or punch. Don't know why...

  3. Lol~ why am I so delighted to hear you say that, Stephanie! To be honest, I kind of agree with you. At least his first book (have yet to read anything else), has a certain archaic prose that reminds me enough of 19th century British novels to keep me's at once infuriating and soothing: the first veneer of the slickness I think you speak of.

    And I will say, what he read when he came to ASU (where he did the Q&A in which we shook hands and he was very friendly), was actually quite captivating. And I feel like I will remember "The Mysteries of Pittsburgh" too...but for no other reason than I felt it was a good modern retelling of "Great Gatsby." Kind of like how I think "Cruel Intentions" was a fantastic contemporary American take on "Dangerous Liasons." But I understand where yer comin' from. There are writers whose work has made me feel absolutely gutted during and after, in ways I think Chabon's too polished to be capable of.

    That said...Renee speaks of you often, and I'm thrilled to have you address me directly! I've wanted to tell you how much I love your baby and how honored I was to spend 3 days in your country. :) Hong Kong is complex and beautiful. I will never forget the man boozing on the stairs to the train station who helped me carry my bags up when he saw me in despair and struggking.

    Have you read "The Train to Lo Wu"? If so, what'd you think?