Posts Tagged: laura van den berg
Author Laura van den Berg has glowing words about Helen Oyeyemi’s short story collection, What Is Not Yours Is Not Yours. In her New York Times book review, van den Berg writes: “A collection is, by my lights, a chance to build a universe, an overarching ecosystem… Oyeyemi has created a universe that dazzles and wounds.”...more
What do you get when you combine a missing sister, an attic door that won’t close, a biohazard cleaning team, and a cameo from two blind tabby cats named Dr. No and Mr. Goldfinger? A new Laura van den Berg story, “Aftermath.” Originally published in the most recent print-only issue of Conjunctions, you can read it online this week at Lit Hub....more
Imagine a world in the late 21st century: countries are underwater from the rising oceans, Europeans have become refugees, and a mathematical formula has been discovered that explains the entire universe, the applications of which include human flight (sans airplane) and the ability to remove pain and grief....more
Over at BOMB Magazine, the brilliant Laura van den Berg has an illuminating conversation with the talented Stephanie Barber, artist-in-residence in the MFA program at the Maryland Institute College of Art. Stephanie says:
Time — and how to organize it, and what happened to it, and what is going to happen in it — is one of the things I like to think about a lot.
To help us cope with the passing of Leonard Nimoy, Melville House shared audio recordings of the baritone-voiced Vulcan reading excerpts from Ray Bradbury’s The Martian Chronicles and The Illustrated Man. The find is definitely worth a listen, and in this newly revived age of plans for Mars missions, the excerpts of this creative duo serve as an elegant reminder of the Martian imaginings of years past....more
I think memory and storytelling rise from a similar impulse. Part of the drive behind the shaping and recalling of memories is a desire to self-narrate: We need our story, our history, our trajectory through life to make some kind of sense, to have a comprehensible shape.
Some story collections drop with fireworks and great fanfare, while others make their entrance, it could be said, on tender feet. The latter is the case with the works of Edith Pearlman, who released her fifth story collection, Honeydew, on Tuesday....more
Saturday 11/8: Brooklyn Comic Arts Festival. Mt. Carmel Church, 11 a.m., free.
Elizabeth Lopeman reads Trans Europe Express (November 2014) about an American au pair considering abandoning her host family. BookCourt, 4 p.m., free.
Peter Friedman, Rachel Nelson, Tommy Pico, Blythe Roberson, and Valerie Hsiung read at the What a Long Strange Trip It’s Been....more
Not every book is a great work of literature, but that doesn’t mean literary authors don’t have fun reading some pulpy genre books. Over at Electric Literature, Amber Sparks confesses to drawing inspiration from Dean Kuntz and Stephen King before speaking with other authors about their less-than-literary influences....more
A story is different from an event . . . The event is what happens. A story is the mythology that rises from what happens. Often this mythology is where the real story, the truest story, lives.
Somewhere between its Kmart and hysterical phases, literary realism got shaken up, when a group of young women writers began crafting a spectral brand of fantastical, strange fiction….Permeating the stories is a sense of omnipresent strangeness made visible.
The Los Angeles Review of Books has a great piece on “our current bumper crop” of women writing—choose your favorite term—magical realism or speculative fiction or just really cool weird stuff....more
They talk about cohesion in short-story collections, faraway settings, and van den Berg’s collection of ceramic Loch Ness monsters. A preview:
…the women I write about are often seduced by the ugliness and the danger, by the violence or the promise of it—and they often end up paying a steep price for that seduction, in that moment where the promise of violence falls away and the bare, brutal reality of it appears.
Laura van den Berg’s debut collection of short stories, What the World Will Look Like When All the Water Leaves Us, creates a nuanced portrayal of female isolation and independence, featuring women who grapple with their careers, their lovers, and the occasional mythical creature in worlds as far as Madagascar and the Congo....more