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BE SAFE I LOVE YOU Selected for Global Filmmaking Award at SUNDANCE

January 28, 2015

Tags: Sundance Film Festival, Haifaa Al Monsour

Happy to share this news!

PARK CITY, UT — Sundance Institute today announced the winners of the 2015 Sundance Institute Global Filmmaking Award in recognition and support of emerging independent filmmakers from around the world. The winning directors and projects are Haifaa Al Mansour, Be Safe I Love You(Saudi Arabia); K’naan, The Poet (Somalia); (more…)

Traffic Jams, Wedding Plans, and Louis-Ferdinand Celine

May 19, 2014

Tags: Spain, France, Marc Lepson, Louis-Ferdinand Celine, modern love

The cat’s been out of the bag for a while now about my love of Louis-Ferdinand Celine. I wrote about him when So Much Pretty came out, and the epigraph of Be Safe I Love You is a quote from Journey to the End of the Night.

I know you don’t like Celine. Which is fine. You’re not supposed to and he certainly never cared one way or the other. He’s an anti-semite. I don’t think anyone’s ever denied or tried to gloss over this fact. Misanthropes tend to be equal opportunity haters.

So all of you who hate Celine for hating, will be happy to know (more…)

The Things She Carried

April 12, 2014

Tags: Fiction, women in the military, The Things She Carried

My piece on women soldiers in literature, first published in New York Times, April 1

THE injury wasn’t new, and neither was the insult. Rebecca, a combat veteran of two tours of duty, had been waiting at the V.A. hospital for close to an hour when the office manager asked if she was there to pick up her husband.

No, she said, fighting back her exasperation. She was there because of a spinal injury she sustained while fighting in Afghanistan. (more…)

Growing Up With Sam Beckett

April 2, 2014

Tags: Samuel Beckett

a latenight childhood existential crisis
When I was a child my parents’ library looked like it had been entirely gleaned from free boxes put out by the Students for a Democratic Society on the University of Michigan quad in 1969. It was an odd variety of texts; Ivan Illich’s Deschooling Society, The Autobiography of Malcolm X, nonsense by Baba Ram Dass, dog-eared books of philosophy, complete editions of Victor Hugo and Zola and James Joyce, the novels of William S. Burroughs, and the plays of Samuel Beckett. They even had a copy of Wilhelm Reich’s book Listen Little Man, illustrated by William Steig. I read many of these books before (more…)

On Colorblindness

March 27, 2014

Tags: Yellow

My favorite color is yellow because it’s one of the only colors I can see.

This is something I don’t think about that much even though it makes my experience in the world significantly different from that of color sighted people. I have severe deuternopia—a kind of red/green colorblindness. This makes things like (more…)

Bad Advice from Kurt Vonnegut

December 19, 2013

Readers of this blog (and friends) will know my mother as the person whose ideas about parenting included reading booze-drenched modernist classics to me when I was eleven. So, it will not come as a surprise to anyone that when I was a few years older than that, she dropped me off at aKurt Vonnegut reading while she went to (more…)

AJAX DINER BOOK CLUB

December 15, 2013

Tags: Charles Hale, Ajax Diner Book Club, Community radio

The writer, music blogger, and reformed window cleaner Charles Hale now has a radio show called the Ajax Diner Book Club. Readers might remember Charles talking here back in December 2010 about his various jobs, William Carlos Williams and the importance of representing working class folks in fiction. Now thanks to (more…)

Lou Reed

October 29, 2013

Tags: Lou Reed, The Velevet Underground, RIP Lou Reed, Andy's Chest

I met Lou Reed eight years ago when I wasn’t living in Manhattan. I’d come to the city by bus from a small gray town unreachable by trains and surrounded by rural poverty, to give a reading at Bluestockings and was staying with my brother on the Lower East Side. When I checked the Time Out New York to see if my event had been listed I noticed that Lou Reed had a (more…)

Sant Cirq

June 27, 2013

Staying in this beautiful town where Andre Breton lived near the caves at Peche Merle. The paintings in the cave are 25,000 years old.

Summer

June 15, 2013

Greetings Readers,

I'm living in the South of France working on the third novel.
Staying in an actual house, not under a bridge like the last time I lived in Europe.

How's summer going in the Panopticon?