Monthly Archives: June, 2011

Very Well Done Indeed

All right, this goes above and beyond all corporate promotional genius ever. The annual report from Podravka, a food company based in Koprivnica, Croatia, has its own title: Well Done. And although at first glance the contents appear blank, if the book is wrapped in foil and baked for 25 minutes at 100˚C, the text […]

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A Sense of Place at The Common

I’ve recently come across a fresh contender in the lovely summertime stream of literary journals, one that’s absolutely worth taking a look at. The Common is a new publication out of Amherst College, with a calling all its own and a keen, clean aesthetic. Editor Jennifer Acker has assembled a terrific editorial board and roster […]

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New Yorker fiction (Jun 27) – “Gravel”

If you’ve the courage, peer intently into a crystal’s sparkly depths. Had you the eyes of a microscope, you would inevitably come upon flawed places where atoms are misaligned or misplaced or missing altogether. These minute villages of disorder contribute to changes in the structure or appearance, or both, of the crystal. Some of the […]

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New Short Fiction by Deborah Eisenberg—“Recalculating”

Apologies for the radio silence here—your humble proprietor has been sick as a dog all week. But being laid up with a Nyquil habit has its upsides: getting on top of all my RSS feeds, for one, and catching up on some online and periodical reading for another. I was especially pleased to see that […]

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Yale’s Windham-Campbell Prize is Well Endowed

Yale University has just announced the establishment of one of the largest series of literary awards in the United States. The Donald Windham – Sandy M. Campbell Literature Prizes, consisting of seven to nine grants each worth $150,000, will be awarded annually to “recognize both established and promising writers in fiction, non-fiction, and drama,” with […]

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These Fragments I Have Shored Against My Ruins: The Waste Land App

In order to begin to understand T.S. Eliot’s epic modernist poem The Waste Land, Jeanette Winterson says, “First of all… you read it out loud—then you’ll start to hear it—and second, you read it at least six times, because that’s what it needs. I can’t offer you any short cuts.” And while that instruction may […]

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Photograph of My Father in His Twenty-Second Year

Photograph of My Father in His Twenty-Second Year by Raymond Carver Octo­ber. Here in this dank, unfa­mil­iar kitchen I study my father’s embar­rassed young man’s face. Sheep­ish grin, he holds in one hand a string of spiny yel­low perch, in the other a bot­tle of Carls­berg beer. In jeans and flan­nel shirt, he leans against […]

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Dog-Earing

There’s no discussion that gets lovers of literature going like the one about marking up books: Do you write in the margins? Underline? Inscribe? Paste bookplates? I think one of the things I enjoy most about altered book art is that whiff of the transgressive, and the way the creative act takes it out of […]

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In Which the Without a Doubt Winner is Announced

And the copy of Marcia Clark’s new thriller, Without a Doubt, goes to Titus, who waxed eloquent about paramedics and firemen and their “compassion, competency, strength and anticipation of their victim’s or patient’s needs.” As the overly proud mother of a paramedic myself, I would agree. Congratulations, Titus! And thanks to everyone who participated.

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A Hundred Years of New Words

Over at the etymology blog Wordorigins.org, Dave Wilton has taken on an interesting word usage project. He’s going through the past century, from 1911 to the present, and putting together a list of words that first appeared in popular English-language use for each year. In each entry, appearing roughly once a week, he’s aiming for […]

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