Becker’s belief in reality, his faith in meaning, and his understanding that meaning can be communicated, has value, and originates in consciousness; are all affirmations of human life. These are ideas worthy of gratitude.
Love without sense or control, love made into a god, is no longer love. It’s a weapon wielded most painfully on the self, but perhaps it also has the potential to deliver healing.
Like a lot of people approaching their first book review, I have no idea what I’m doing. So, for my sake, and for the sake of other would-be reviewers, I decided that, in addition to my review, I would compile a guide on writing book reviews. Never mind that I’ve never done this before…
A book Review in Letters: Sarah Seltzer and Sarah Braud on The Casual Vacancy by J.K. Rowling Dear Sarah, I wish we were sending this by Owl instead of email. Oh, well, let’s be prosaic and leave wizardry behind. A nickname for this new novel, which involves a contested seat for the town of Pagford’s Parish Council after a beloved […]
From Reading to Wonder: Erika Anderson on Safe as Houses by Marie-Helene Bertino ~6th in a series When I tell people I’m a writer, they ask what I’m reading. This is smart. It’s smart because more often than not, we’re in a bar, and I’m not sure if I want to talk about my writing at […]
Rhoda Rapport: Natalie Serber on Ellen Gilchrist’s Rhoda, A Life in Stories When I first fell in love with Rhoda K. Manning, I was in my early twenties and making a lot of bad decisions—failing classes at my community college; drinking Moscow Mules; dating waiters, surfers, a lawyer who sat next to me on a cross-country flight—and […]
Penny Blubaugh on Lisa Goldstein’s Walking the Labyrinth Lately I’ve been seeing my writing life as a labyrinth. The twists and turns it takes are even more dramatic than I expected, and believe me, I did expect drama. But more and more often, the dark parts of my particular labyrinth have been harder to illuminate, and the […]
From Reading to Human: Erika Anderson on tiny beautiful things by Cheryl Strayed On a sunburny afternoon in Prospect Park, I drank apple-ginger soda and talked about death with a man who boxed, followed the zodiac, and read palms. He sang a line from Sade’s song “Maureen” about losing her best friend, “You’ll never meet my new […]
John Proctor on selected essays from The Best American Essays 2002 . ~9th in a series SourceURL:fiaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa Most of us living in New York City on 9/11 were not in the World Trade Center, many of us nowhere even near it. I was working in market research on 25th Street and was supposed to start […]
Stories Speaking to Stories: Cynthia Newberry Martin on Natalie Serber’s Shout Her Lovely Name . Here’s a confession: For many months now, I haven’t wanted to read story collections. Each time I paused in front of my waiting-to-be-read stacks, the story collections would jump up and down, screaming it was their turn, while the novels did nothing […]
I dated a man in college who could not bear to leave food on a plate, his or anyone else’s. He would dispatch his food with good speed, then pick at the borders of my meal while I ate. Before my fork hit the table he’d drag my leftovers to his side and tuck in.