This week, Karen Russell of Swamplandia! fame has a new story in The New Yorker that unearths the self-deceptions beneath what we often think is love, and also unearths a body. In “The Bog Girl,” a teenage boy named Cillian digs up the 2,000-year-old body of a girl that has been perfectly preserved by a peat bog and then, with Russell’s classic flair for the imaginative and the creepy, falls immediately in love with her....more
Posts Tagged: swamplandia
As the story goes, nearly 100 years ago a group of Surrealist artists gathered together and put a new spin on an old parlor game called Consequences. The meeting resulted in their collective authorship of this phrase: “The/ exquisite/ corpse/ will/ drink/ the/ young/ wine.” Now familiar to many writers by the name of “Exquisite Corpse,” the game requires at least three participants who send round a single sheet of paper on which each member, looking only at the entry that came before him or her, makes a written or drawn contribution, folds over the paper, and passes it on to the next person....more
Russell and Oatman discuss her Pulitzer Prize-nominated novel Swamplandia!, as well as topics ranging from the imagination, vampires, and what kind of horse Mitt Romney would be.
MJ: What do you think poses the biggest threat to our imaginations?
“In your own life, you’re pretty powerless. And then there’s this alternate zone where there’s an external enemy you can fight. It would be easy if there were just a giant alligator Ava and her brother and sister could wrestle, instead of cancer and bankruptcy.”
That’s Karen Russell talking about the role of the children’s adventure-story plot in her novel, Swamplandia....more
Litquake talks with Swamplandia author Karen Russell in a final interview before the festival’s kick-off tomorrow! The conversation reveals abhorred writing styles; overused phrases; favorite writers, words and fiction heroes; and more.
“I like assigning The Waves and Geek Love to students, or a book like Denis Johnson’s Jesus’ Son, because you can practically watch their pupils dilate as they read them—I think there are certain books that are so stylistically innovative or so wholly “other” that they detonate inside readers....more