November 17th, 2011 / 4:15 pm

words and a napkin

1. This audio interview (The Lit Show) with Martone is sort of great. It sprawls about and then, at the half hour, writers and teachers Rachel Yoder, Dylan Nice, and Zachary Tyler Vickers join the conversation. A lot of glow here on regional writing, teaching writing, experimental writing, etc. Worth a listen.

2. Christopher Grimes goes:

Like life itself, writing and reading can be really boring. Reading boring writing, writing boring stuff.

14. This is not a bible verse. This is that amazing hangover essay from a while back in the The New Yorker:

Proverbs 31:6-7: “Give . . . wine unto those that be of heavy hearts. Let him drink, and forget his poverty, and remember his misery no more.”

3. Philip Hunt on creativity.

The tricky part for anyone is realizing that it’s just about filtering & channeling whatever interests or talents you may have into something, which allows for that to be fully expressed – and on a repeat basis till you either get good at it or realize you should have done something else.

4. You can get a wine-speckled bar napkin signed by Peyton Manning for 10 dollars.



  1. Cvan

      Martone interview:  Nice section about defying and destroying boundaries, including the idea that “experimental” means nothing.  Instead writers are either 1) Narrative or Non-Narrative, and 2) Realist or Non-Realist.  There are four possible combinations, with Martone of course considering himself a Non-Narrative Realist.  This post is not by Michael Martone but it might be.

  2. Cvan

      More Martone: Also, the workshop doesn’t teach writing, it teaches criticism.

  3. Michael

      What’s the deal with “glow” in so many of your posts? 

  4. Cvan

      Probably from writing with runes.

  5. Guest

      I agree totally with much of what Martone said about workshop culture and the idea of traditional v. non-traditional form. very great interview all around.

  6. Leapsloth14

      I wish it was. He’s my Obi Wan Kenobi.

  7. Leapsloth14

      Jabberwocky. Mindbendingly good milkshakes.

  8. Michael

      I haven’t listened to the interview yet, but I’ve always appreciated his willingness to critique the workshop system while residing within it. 

      Once you leave most grad workshops and/or stop taking workshops, you realize how bizarre they can sometimes be and how they often reinforce all sorts of strange binaries and ways of discussing writing that are borderline ridiculous. 

  9. Michael

      Listened to most of it. Amazing. Anyone who teaches CW should listen. 

  10. MJ

      Yeah that’s cool. But how do we know its real? My dad played with Mannings dad back in the day, when he was with the Saints.

  11. deadgod

      That’s an amusing dichotomy.

      –but, if most writing is re-writing . . .

  12. deadgod

      Are the “boundaries” in 1) and 2) really more worth preserving than the ‘convention/experiment’ boundary?  The latter is every bit as empirically compelling.

  13. Leapsloth14

      We don’t

  14. Cvan

      You’re right, of course.  The most compelling blend, I think, is semi-narrative coupled with semi-realist.  It’s the same dialogue in film, though, or used to be.

  15. Cvan

      Now you understand my glowing.