With a mix of humor, agility, and insight, Jade Chang’s debut novel, The Wangs vs. the World (HMH Books, October 2016), tells a fresh immigrant story. Charles Wang has left his native homeland to become a successful businessman in America. The book takes us on a journey with his whole family as they navigate the ups and downs of fortune and travel across the US....more
Posts Tagged: jack kerouac
What is more American than the road trip? Steven Melendez has created an astonishingly detailed interactive map of the beloved institution as documented in twelve works of American literature. The books featured include Cheryl Strayed’s Wild, Jack Kerouac’s On the Road, Mark Twain’s Roughing It, John Steinbeck’s Travels with Charley, and Tom Wolfe’s The Electric Kool-Acid Test....more
The New Yorker has unlocked a selection of Jack Kerouac’s journals that ran in the magazine back in 1998. Beginning with his near-completion of Town and City, and ending days after its publication, the text captures the growing pains of a 25-year-old author:
Got form-rejection card from Macmillan’s.
Craving to be a ‘50s vagabond like Kerouac’s Sal Paradise but fear traveling without your GPS? On the Road fans worry need not worry! Gregor Weichbrodt has “rewritten” the entire novel solely using Google Maps driving directions. The open-source book is fifty-five pages long and only features 17,527 miles....more
Maria Popova from Brain Pickings takes a look at a chapter titled “New York Scenes” from Kerouac’s 1960 book, Lonesome Traveler.
According to Popova, the chapter is “a kind of narrative emotional cartography of Manhattan, woven of fascinating sketches of Gotham’s vibrant life and cast of characters as recorded in Kerouac’s travel journals, written in his signature style of spontaneous prose, complete with his famous disdain for apostrophes.”
After reading Popova’s article, one can’t help but long to travel back and party with Kerouac in New York, even if it were only for a night....more
You know Jack Kerouac. Everyone knows Jack Kerouac. Father of the Beat generation, though he disliked that label, author of the free thinkers bible On the Road, culture maker, lover of the mad, and general all around badass. He receives as much posthumous love as any other dead author, perhaps more; this year saw the release of a new movie based on his On the Road, a new biography, the release of unpublished fiction, and importantly, so I would like to contend, a release of all his collected poetry....more
In 1957, shortly after the publication of his second novel, On The Road, Jack Kerouac wrote a letter to Marlon Brando, pleading with him to buy the movie rights to the book....more
Truman Capote famously said that what Jack Kerouac did wasn’t writing, but typing. I take just as much offense today to this slander as I did ten years ago as an undergraduate when first hearing it quoted by an English professor....more
Beat Generation, Kerouac’s only known full-length play, will premiere this year in eight performances as part of October’s Jack Kerouac Literary Festival in Lowell, Massachusetts. The play was written in 1957 and shelved for half a century before being uncovered in a Jersey City warehouse in 2004....more
Jack Kerouac’s literary imprint has made its way into some surprising mediums–a t-shirt sold at Urban Outfitters, a lyric of a Katy Perry single. Though the commercialization of literature isn’t exactly breaking news, it is interesting to track the ways in which art is being commodified or stripped from its original literary roots and regurgitated into product-form....more
“I’m praying that you’ll buy On the Road and make a movie of it…. I visualize the beautiful shots could be made with the camera on the front seat of the car showing the road (day and night) unwinding into the windshield, as Sal and Dean yak…....more
I think I was twelve when I first heard the word Bohemia.
I didn’t really know what it meant but it conjured up a mist-drenched, mountainous region where men in long coats and women in peasant skirts sang the praises of Bacchus all night long in roadside taverns....more
“Even if you don’t care much for the Beats, it’s still pretty amazing to read about how Kerouac invented his own fantasy baseball league, illustrated his own made-up rosters, and actually played imaginary baseball games with himself well into adulthood—working out every at-bat between fictional teams with an arcane system that seemingly combined elements of craps, jacks and who knows what else.”...more