Wednesday, December 10, 2008

A08, A09; Comment-Reply Portion; A10: Reviews and Ruminations

For your perusal:

A post on The Tenant of Wildfell Hall: an analytical review.
A post on readings and refusals: case study of authors and hubris.
A post on my near-death experiences with cabbies (yes, Mr. Terry -- they do exist).
A post on a writing exercise: corpse poems.

In keeping with my promise post, I think I'll get down to business fairly soon. First, though, I'd like to say I have no idea how I can possibly still have outstanding blog assignments when I have been blogging each week. I should have probably done multiple entries every week, instead of just some weeks. Anyway.

This is a link to my close-reading review of The Tenant. It's a plot spoiler; I read through the whole text and tried to figure out if it really was about drunks or if it was about marriage; I figured it was more about the rights of Victorian women, so I wrote about that. A lot of quotage. It's probably going to be a waste of your time to read. Good book, though. Very appropriate to Victorian literature. Another good read is The Woman Who Walked into Doors. There's a sequel to that called Paula Spencer. Something like that, anyway. (Spencer's the main character.)

As for attending literary readings or author seminars, I can honestly say I have been to quite a number of them in the past. Before college, I was bored and didn't particularly like the things that were going on in my neighborhood. I was close to Philly and decided what the hay, may as well kill some time. I think it's for that reason that I have the opinions and perspectives on writing that I do; I would go to more of them now if not for the fact that the ones I did attend after I moved up here were in New York... And I swear. They were pompous. I'm sorry, they were - don't kill me. I'm sure it was just the night, my mood, the author - I'm confident that there are other readings and events out there that I would prefer. But I just can't get that mood up.

It takes quite a lot of effort for a New Jersian to travel into the city... Quite a lot of money, too, if you're going to make a "day" of it. Well... Maybe not. I guess it depends on what you do that day. But! In general, I have noticed that every time I go into THE BIG APPLE I return home significantly lighter in the wallet department and with at least three more tally marks on the "near-death experiences" scoresheet. (Yes, I keep one. You should, too. It makes for better tasting cereal in the morning.)

Yes. It's true. I have been nearly killed almost every single time I go into the city. It all started with a young lady, myself, hitching a ride in a cab from East Harlem to the Village and not having the money to pay the fare. I was forced to kill the cabbie but was seen by a cabbie on break; I didn't see his dimmed car on the other side of the street. I've ever since had my picture posted on the walls of every cab dispatch station, for knife-throwing practice purposes.

I am such a liar. Truly, though: I've had three accidents in my car, all because of cabbies rear-ending or cutting me off. I then stopped taking my car into the city and became well acquainted with the dangers of cabbies who run red lights to catch a fare ride standing on a nearby corner. I have tried to stay away from the corner whenever the light has just changed, only to be steamrolled by pedestrians and almost shoved into the street.

Perhaps I just look like I should be maimed and killed? I would love to know. ...Really.

Maybe it's just the way I do things; maybe there's some sly secret guide to surviving in the city, both monetarily and bodily. Is there? Please let me know. I'd love to expand my horizons. As for readings... I just really hate that face. You know the one. Everyone who has ever been published gets it. Even Billy Joel gets it, when he plays his own music. (If you don't believe me, watch the A&E special on him.) It's the "I'm totally doing my own stuff" face. The face that says, "This is what I did and it is inherently awesome and moreover from that it is recognizably awesome as you can probably tell by the clearness of the letters that spell out my name on this book cover, on the table of contents, on the page at which my piece appears."

I hate that face.

That's one of the top reasons I stopped going in the first place. That, and hearing a poet I shall not name talk about trees, constellations, and sex. Old sex. Ahem.

That sort of reminds me. That whole poem exercise where we folded up the papers and whatnot - I REMEMBER! It was "corpse poems," right? Is that correct?? - was interesting. Like the aforementioned poet, it seems sometimes like poetry really can be unrelated sentences of seemingly nonsense... All it takes is a reader to apply some deeply imbedded meaning they might have been looking for in the first place, even without fully examining the entire piece. Do you know what I mean? I liked the deconstruction of the art that I perceived while doing the exercise - especially after the reading of the completed poems, which seemed to be as deciferable as certain other poems about Iraq that I've recently heard.


To come:

A surprise post.

A Foreshadowing of a Busy Bee


  • A post on The Tenant of Wildfell Hall, paper-style.
  • A post on readings and refusals: case study of authors and hubris.
  • A post on my near-death experiences with cabbies (yes, Mr. Terry -- they do exist).
  • A post on a writing exercise (skeletal poems).
  • A surprise post.