Michael Schaub

“When she stepped off the elevator, my only hope for salvation was that Lorrie Moore had been drunk, or that there was something I didn’t know about her, like perhaps that she was deaf.”

15 Rich-Ass Authors I’ve Suddenly Decided To Like

I really enjoyed reading Blake Butler’s list of “15 Towering Literary Figures,” and Christopher Higgs’ list of “15 Significant Contemporary Women Writers.” Both were great, and I disagreed vehemently with those who criticized Blake for not putting more non-Americans on his list, because we all know that Americans are the only people who are any good at anything. Sorry, foreign losers! I also disagreed with whoever called Christopher a self-hating sellout to the gynocracy, whatever that means. Actually, I guess I said that. To myself. Just now.

Anyway, there was one glaring problem with both lists: Very few of the writers mentioned are super fucking rich. So I decided to make a list of 15 authors who I am going to pretend to like from now on, in the hopes they will send me money. I mean, Brian Evenson is a good writer, but is Brian Evenson going to keep you in expensive hookers and 40-year-old Laphroaig? No, Brian Evenson is not. So have fun drinking store-brand sodas with Jorie Graham and Diane Williams, guys! I’ll be in Ibiza, pronouncing “Ibiza” pretentiously, with my 15 new best friends:

Dan Brown


John Grisham



Web Hype / 103 Comments
September 9th, 2009 / 3:55 pm

Power Quote: W. S. Merwin

W. S. Merwin

W. S. Merwin

“I had hardly begun to read

I asked how can you ever be sure

that what you write is really

any good at all and he said you can’t

you can’t you can never be sure

you die without knowing

whether anything you wrote was any good

if you have to be sure don’t write”

-From “Berryman”

Power Quote / 12 Comments
September 5th, 2009 / 1:33 pm

Nemo Me Impune Lacessit

The Last King Of Scotland

The Last King Of Scotland

The Guardian says that Scottish literature has been split in two by comments made by James Kelman, who over the weekend attacked “writers of detective fiction or books about some upper middle-class young magician or some crap.” My first reaction to this was “Man, it is apparently super fucking easy to split Scottish literature in two,” but upon further reflection that seems petty. American literature gets split in two pretty much every other week, and usually Oprah Winfrey has something to do with it.

I should refrain from discussing what this whole contretemps might do to Scotland’s collective national psyche, at least until I can fake a better Scottish accent. But it got me thinking about the old “literary fiction” versus “genre fiction” debate, which leads me to this question: Does this debate make you want to (a) shoot yourself in the head, or (b) stab yourself in the face? If someone brings this topic up, do you usually (a) cry, or (b) vomit blood? Either way, it sounds like Scotland is kind of fucked, which is a shame, because I like that “Belle and Sebastian” band. (By the way: Hi! My name is Michael.)

Random / 44 Comments
September 1st, 2009 / 10:00 pm