I’m a sucker for obituaries. In fact, I’m sure I’d be quite happy writing obituaries. They combine all of my favorite writing topics: interesting people, current events, and history. What’s not to love? The death part, I guess. And such is the case in these two recent deaths: Otis Chandler (transformer/former publisher of the LA Times) and Sybille Bedford (novelist and memoirist).
Check out Narrative Magazine, featuring fiction and non-fiction writing. Even if you read nothing else, you must read “Shy” by Ric Bass. It’s simply gorgeous:
When youâ€™re shy, and a writer, itâ€™s not the same as being just, say, shy and a mechanic, or shy and a typist: I mean, people know youâ€™re watching them. Itâ€™s like youâ€™ve lost all your privacyâ€”you canâ€™t even stand in a crowd and be quiet and watch things, because they know what youâ€™re up toâ€”and then if that crowd happens to be other writers, well, thatâ€™s the worst, itâ€™s just the absolute worst.
(via The Millions)
The Olive Reader (Harper Perennial’s blog) ponders handwriting.
I haven’t gotten around to reading the Life of Pi yet, but I’m very interested in the on-going competition for the illustrated edition. An illustrator will be picked in April, and the Times has a gallery of the shortlist picks. (via Drawn!)
I’ve both read and seen A Clockwork Orange, but I must admit the film made a greater (or longer-lasting) impression on me. And I must admit that I never considered either to be a work of genius, though Theodore Dalrymple’s (great name, eh?) “A Prophetic and Violent Masterpiece” is quite convincing.
And surprising. Did you know that Burgessâ€™s American publisher omitted the last chapter so the book wouldn’t end happily? A lot has changed in 44 years.