Posts Tagged: Michael Berger

Perec On Asking For A Raise

By

Everyday life is surprisingly full of hair-raising adventures. Sometimes you don’t realize it until you’re in the thick of it. Waiting for the grocery store manager to confirm that you are not in fact the same guy who stole the roast chicken three days prior. Finding yourself in your boss’s office, waiting for him to […]

...more

Introducing Anna Kavan

By

There’s an indispensable book called About Writing by Samuel R. Delany. In the first essay he cobbles together an eclectic list of authors that, ideally, the aspiring writer should read. Because Delany has read everything, you can bet his tastes are wide and varied. And it’s thanks to that book that I discovered Anna Kavan.

...more

The H.D. Book: A Clarion Call for all Artists and Writers

By

In school I took a class on female poets and was instantly taken with the poetry of H.D., especially her later work Trilogy, a savage and mythic poem about rediscovering meaning in the ruins of war. One of the founding Imagists, H.D. was Ezra Pound’s muse, D.H. Lawrence’s “platonic lover” and friend and one-time patient […]

...more

Cendrars, The Extraordinary Daydreamer

By

Long before David Shields excoriated the strict boundaries between journalism and fiction, espousing, in its place, a loose and open-ended hybrid that is more in keeping with “reality”, a Swiss-born Frenchman with one arm, a Gauloises cigarette forever dangling from his grizzled lips and a swaggering nonchalance befitting only a soldier and a drifter, penned […]

...more

Long Live Hobos

By

In Santa Cruz, I had occasion to meet some hobos. Real or fake hobos: it was hard to make the distinction in a town so enshrined to the misfit ideal. There was a train bridge near the roller-coaster that you could walk across if you were brave enough. (Yeah, it was the same train bridge […]

...more

My Year In Books

By

As The Millions keeps rolling out their amazing Year In Reading series, I’d thought I’d offer my own attempt at doing justice to the books in my life, and not just the ones I read this year but the ones that keep piling up on my desk, on my floor, in my bed with the […]

...more

Elitist White People Trying To Make Themselves Feel Better

By

(Which includes me.) “The workshop’s most famous mantras – ‘Murder your darlings,’ ‘Omit needless words,’ ‘Show, don’t tell’ – also betray a view of writing as self-indulgence, an excess to be painfully curbed in AA-type group sessions. Shame also explains the fetish of ‘craft’: an ostensibly legitimising technique, designed to recast writing as a workmanlike, […]

...more

Books For The Dark Night Of The Soul

By

In his late thirties, F. Scott Fitzgerald experienced a series of emotional and mental breakdowns, many of which he wrote about in a series of random essays and observations collected under the title, The Crack-Up. At the beginning of the self-titled essay, he writes: “Of course, all of life is a process of breaking down, […]

...more

Hitchens On Dying

By

“At a luncheon earlier in the day with Hitchens and Berlinski, Taunton asked Hitchens about his health problems. ‘Well, I’m dying, since you asked,’ Hitchens replied. ‘So are you, but I’m doing it faster and in more rich and fecund detail.’” Despite recently undergoing chemotherapy for esophageal cancer, Hitchens still shows up to debate a […]

...more

The Horniest Species Imaginable

By

“Only with the relatively recent shift from off-the-land foraging to agriculture did our species veer away from cooperation and sharing, even sharing of mates, in small groups; hierarchy, sexual repression and violence may pass for the human normal nowadays, but it wasn’t always so.” At Bookslut, a detailed discussion of the points made in the […]

...more

Erickson Eats Oranges, Or How To Really Like A Book

By

I’m a sucker for blurbs, I have to admit. But then writers blurb their friends, right? It’s just the right thing to do, so maybe it doesn’t say that much about the book.  Yet I’m always looking to see what writers have praised what books and why. It’s borderline compulsive. (Jonathan Lethem, I’ve decided, has […]

...more

New Eugenides

By

If you’re like me, Middlesex blew your mind.  Here was a book chock-full of wildly different themes, all of them improbably interconnected: incest, genocide, Detroit, the Nation of Islam and hermaphrodites, to name but a few. It was a novel that did a lot, almost too much and which took its author, Jeffrey Eugenidies ten […]

...more