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Showing posts from October, 2010

somber city?

We're in Chicago--with no periods, semicolons, or colons on this netbook--but we're here, at the Association for Business Communications Conference, hobnobbing with the B-School and Communications crowd, perhaps unlike creative writers, they can discern a career path in the near and far terms, so now I feel like a paragraph from Jean-Philippe Toussaint's Camera, stopping with commas, and then moving on, it's life in windy weather, indeed

but i wanted to drift back to the bit of Saul Bellow quoted by Fred Exley, the "somber city" of Augie's first paragraph if I'm not mistaken, and truth be told, I've read four or five Bellow novels but not that one and yet I think of it a lot, think of reading it, own it in fine trade paper, and have already named a central character in a future novel Auggie in recognition of Bellow's fellow and also the Harvey Keitel cigar-store photographer in Paul Auster and Wayne Wang's Smoke

But back to Chicago--is it …

Hurricanes Anonymous

Matt Johnson's "Hurricanes Anonymous" (found in the 2009 Best American Short Stories) will not disappoint. I think it is the only short story I've read that takes place after Katrina and Rita, but I'm sure there must be many more. Any good ones come to mind?

The Joseph Epstein story in this collection is quite strong too although his story about a famous writer in another recent Best American Stories (sorry, no date) struck me as an amazing one. Epstein apparently writes about writers (and their widows) quite a bit. I'm the kind of writer who will gobble these down.

Eleanor Henderson next!