27 November 2012

Wow.

The past couple of weeks has been quite the whirlwind.  The launch of Bloom  has been wonderful—lots of enthusiasm and support, not to mention some choice press from the New Yorker, the LA Times, Flavorwire, and The Atlantic (coming soon: a bloggy thing on Bloom at the HuffPo).  Today I got a mini-orientation to the wonders of Twitter; which I sort of get, in theory, but only superficially at this point.  At any rate, Bloom  is at this point something between a magazine and a community, and it’s that community part that needs to engage at both Facebook and Twitter; and if you know me/have been reading my blog, you know that I’m, uh, not the best person to make that happen.  But we’ll figure it out.

All this to say that with editorial plates spinning, a novel in-progress, teaching, continuing to write for The Millions, and basic life-care; writing here with any regularity is The Thing That Has to Go.  I’ll be signing off for a little while; but I’ll  be back.  In some form or another.  Things have a way of continuing, even as they cease…

Peace out.

(p.s. I’ll keep up my Reading List page, mostly for my own visual record.)

12 November 2012

Today, my brief look at “forced mobility,” i.e. exile, at The Common.  

With the displacement of so many during Hurricane Sandy—separation from home, identity, stability—my monthly reflection on mobility took me to various perspectives on exile, by writers who’ve lived it first-hand.  Roberto Bolano‘s position is especially interesting.

Also: today Bloom launches!  Come visit us at this new literary site and community.

Bolano image via jeansilver/flickr

5 November 2012

It was Annie Dillard’s A Pilgrim at Tinker Creek that made me want to be writer. I mentioned this recently to a friend who studied with her at Wesleyan, and he confirmed two things I’ve often heard about her: she was a chain smoker most of her life, and she’s a generous person.

Revisiting The Maytrees, her last novel—”last” by Dillard’s own account, i.e. in an interview she said she was done with writing—I am reminded of what strikes me, again and again, about her writing: intelligence, humor, strangeness:

She was twenty-three.  She could not imagine that a brave man could shrink from risking one woman’s refusal.  She wanted only a lifelong look at his face and his long-legged, shambly self, broken by intervals of kissing.  After a while she might even, between kisses, look into his eyes.  No time soon.

The Maytrees is a beautiful story, well told.  What a privilege to read it again.

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