Bookslut Interview Double-Shot: Toal+Evenson; Cronkite+Stein
Our own Drew Toal talks to Brian Evenson in the July issue of Bookslut. (Did we link this already? Who cares?)
My favorite story, “An Accounting” follows the emergence of a Midwestern Jesus, who accidentally starts all of these bizarre rites with the ragamuffins of humanity out of necessity. It quickly spirals out of control. Do you think this is an accurate reflection of how many religions begin?
I think a lot of religions, especially at the beginning, either tend to spiral outward or tighten inward. They either quickly spiral out of control or they tighten in to become conventionalized and reified. In the first case they move quickly to chaos, in the second, they move toward bureaucracy. Neither is very good, but the first is definitely more interesting, at least for the writer. The trick is trying to strike a balance between those two, which is something very few religions ever manage.
Also, the Bookslut Blog links to this old piece from The Daily Texan, original run date March 22, 1935- a young Walter Cronkite interviews Gertrude Stein.
The conversation last night ranged from the Walter Winchell comment that the most beautiful girls in America are in Dallas, to the possibilities of another war.
“A writer isn’t anything but contemporary. The trouble is that the people are living Twentieth Century and thinking Nineteenth Century,” Miss Stein said in answering a query concerning the attitude of Americans toward her works.
“Why the fact was evident up at Hockaday (where she stayed in Dallas). The girls of from fourteen to seventeen understood perfectly, but their teachers did not,” she continued.