Story Log

You’re probably thinking to yourself, “What, hasn’t he been reading? All that shit he adds to his goodreads list; what’s he doing, slacking?”

Slacking on blogging, that’s for sure (and engaging in general human contact, household chores, and stuff). Been busy, but to make it up to you like an absentee parent who disappears for weeks at a time, then bombards you with gifts, here are three weeks worth of lists of stuff I’ve read…

10/22-10/28

  • Mary Robison, “Seizing Control”
  • Veronica Schanoes, “Rats”
    (Comments here)
  • Jessica Hagedorn, “Tenement Lover: no palm trees/in new york city”
  • Caroline Cheng, “Consolation”

10/29-11/4

  • Amy Hempel, “Daylight Come”
  • Amy Hempel, “The Harvest”
  • Jan Lars Jensen, “Happier Days”
  • Jane Avrich, “The Life of Cards”
  • Aimee Bender, “Lemonade”

11/5-11/11

  • Kate Bernheimer, “Whitework”
  • Judy Budnitz, “Abroad”
  • Barry Hannah, “A Creature in the Bay of St. Louis”
  • Mikal Trimm, “Climbing Redemption Mountain”

Where the Hell

…is my copy of Raymond Carver’s Cathedral?

Or, do I even have one? I could’ve sworn I bought it some time ago, but I’ve looked through every place in the apartment that I’ve ever set a book and I can’t find it.

Now, I’m actually starting to doubt if I ever had it. But, I put it on my goodreads list, so what the fuck?

EDIT: Now, where the hell is my copy of Chicago X?? I know I bought this one! See, this isn’t funny anymore.

Get This Now!

Drop what you’re doing and buy this now! Now, I tell you!

Why should you, you ask? Let me, as the kids say, break it down for you. Stories by, among others, Aimee Bender, Rikki Ducornet, Shelley Jackson, Miranda July, and Kelly Link. To say nothing about the poetry and the fact that the “Special Advisory Editor” is Rick Moody.

Believe me, I’ve read the first set of poems and the first three stories. I wanted to dry my tears with my torn-up manuscripts, caught between feelings of jumping for joy and jumping into a gorge because of the subconscious fear that I’ll never, ever write anything that good.

Now, go on, get it. I’ll be fine. Just go ;).

The Reading List

Yes, this one’s overdue, just like all my other entries. Deal :). So, two weeks ago, I read some cool stuff, mostly from The Best of Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet and a couple of old issues of Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine

  • Geoffrey H. Goodwin, “Stoddy Awchaw”
  • Theodora Goss, “The Rapid Advance of Sorrow”
  • Sarah Monette, “Three Letters From the Queen of Elfland”
  • Gigi Vernon, “Solomon’s Wedding”
  • Gigi Vernon, “The Maidservant’s Letter”
  • Janice Law, “The Girl Watcher”

Yeah, I said I was gonna read Dogeaters by Jessica Hagedorn. Sue me. I’ll get to it this week ;).

Speaking of Reading

…I have to pass on listing the various short stories I’ve read this week, unless you want me to regurgitate the table of contents for the last half of Barry Hannah’s Airships.

To tell the truth, I’m going to slow the short-story reading for a bit, even though I want to just continue with reading more Hannah. I snatched up a used copy of Hannah’s collection High Lonesome at one of the used bookstores. Instead, while I edit my last couple of stories, I’m going to read American Son and Dogeaters, slated to be the 6th and 7th novels I’ve read in the past four years.

It used to be a point of pride with me to be able to brag about how many shorts I’ve read at the expense of novel reading. I’ve come to realize, since I devoured Nick Sagan’s Idlewild trilogy and Ben Tanzer’s Lucky Man, that I do just shove them down my literary throat. I go through novels like I go through showings of Scent of a Woman or A Few Good Men on cable TV–before I know it, I’ve spent a couple of hours–2 to 3 days in the case of novels–doing nothing but taking it all in. Case in point, I’m a third of the way into American Son, and if I did nothing else for the rest of the night, I know I could finish it.

More to Read (Not That I’m Complaining)

I attended a presentation at the local library yesterday by poet, author, and teacher Luis H. Francia, called “Longing and Belonging: The Idea of Home in Asian American Literature”. Don’t worry, I’ll keep my thoughts on the eye-opening themes of his lecture, how they’ve impacted my personal views on my culture which impacts on my writing, to myself (for now!). Suffice it to say that I was honored to get to speak with the man briefly afterward, and was pleased that the library actually carried two out of the three books he suggested to me, namely the novels Gangster of Love by Jessica Hagedorn and Brian Ascalon Roley’s American Son. The library didn’t have the third, Hagedorn’s Dogeaters, but a local bookstore did.

Yeah, I bought it and borrowed American Son. Yeah, I know I already bought a crapload of books to read. I bought a couple more on top of that last week, too. I’ll read what I want. Hey, quit yelling at me…

Good Reads

Last week, I got through some awesome stuff…

  • Mary Robison, “In Jewel”
  • Amy Hempel, “Three Popes Walk Into a Bar”
  • Karen Joy Fowler, “Heartland”
  • Barry Hannah, “Green Gets It”
  • Barry Hannah, “Our Secret Home”
  • Amy Hempel, “The Man in Bogotá”
  • Amy Hempel, “When It’s Human Instead of Dog”
  • Amy Hempel, “Breathing Jesus”
  • Ray Vukcevich, “Pretending”
  • Jeffery Ford, “What’s Sure to Come”

With that, I’ve finished off the first quarter of The Collected Stories of Amy Hempel, which was originally the collection Reasons to Live–so, I’ve technically finally finished one of the many collections I’m multitasking on. And, at the rate I’m going, I’m going be done with Hannah’s Airships in pretty short order, too.

Good Reads

I know it looks like I just buried my nose in a book the whole weekend. In fact, I took my Saturday and went to the local comic show where I got to hang for a few minutes with an editor from VERTIGO comics. I’ll talk about that next time, maybe.

  • Italo Calvino, “Good for Nothing”
  • Karen Jordan Allen, “Alternate Anxieties”
  • Amy Hempel, “Pool Night”
  • Rachel Pollack, “Burning Beard: The Dreams and Visions of Jacob ben Joseph, Lord Viceroy of Egypt”
  • Barry Hannah, “Water Liars”
  • Barry Hannah, “Love Too Long”
  • Barry Hannah, “Coming Close to Donna”
  • Mary Robison, “I Am Twenty-One”
  • Barry Hannah, “Quo Vadis, Smut?”
    (Comments on it, here)

Good Reads

You’d think that since my last entry, I hadn’t read any stories since June. So untrue. I’ve had other things to write but my reading list, but I figure I’d just try to get back into the swing of it.

So, some (but not all) of the cooler short stories I’ve read this past week…

Good Reads

I know what I’ve said about commenting on short stories. But I’ve read a couple of things worth talking about at certain places. All of these stories are worthy of comment, but alas–so many stories, so little time.