Tag Archives: Ron Rash

Must Read: “Why I Write”

30 Aug

Wow. All I can say is that you MUST go read Stephen Elliot’s article “Why I Write” over at the Rumpus. Especially if you have any interest in writing whatsoever. You will not regret it, promise.

The thing I really liked about the article, besides his wonderful honesty, is how relatable it is. I think that every writer could read it and point to one section of it and say: “that’s where I am right now as a writer.” As for me, section 1 all the way.

Now I am DYING to start reading The Adderall Diaries. I think I will. Right now. Well — I should do some work, then start it tonight. It’s a plan!

Oh, I finished Ron Rash’s first novel — the first he published, he’s got four out now! — One Foot in Eden last night and I really enjoyed it. Especially how the novel is divided up into sections, by different character’s perspectives, and the only scene in which those four characters are together is (debatedly) the last major scene in the novel. Very nice.

Summer Reading List

11 Jun

Bleh… that used to be the dreaded three-word phrase of my high school summers. Not because I don’t like to read; rather, because I had a whole list of books I wanted to read instead of my “assigned” books. As a result, I spent most of June hardly reading anything — one of my assigned books if I was lucky — July giving up my assignment and reading a handful of my chosen books, and the first two weeks of August reading the rest of my assigned books in a frenzied panic.

Ah, the joys of college life. An entire three month period entirely devoted to reading… well, I am supposedly doing research at school this summer, but that involves reading, too. Reading that I actually want to do. And so, inspired by a post that the Poets & Writers websiteĀ  just posted (see below), I’ve decided to share my own summer reading list — divided, of course, into their own little categories just for your entertainment.

Poets & Writers Summer Reading List

What I have to read for my research (AKA books I really wanted to read anyways that the school pays for…):

– Written on the Body by Jeanette Winterson (actually, I had read this before this summer and it’s one of my favorite books… READ IT)
– The World and Other Places: Stories by Jeanette Winterson
– The Book of Not by Tsitsi Dangarembga
– Woman at Point Zero by Nawal El Saadawi (have finished: very good, quick read — powerful novel)
– Season of Migration to the North by Tayeb Salih (have finished: a piece of African literature I would highly recommend)
– Butterfly Burning by Yvonne Vera
– In Another Place, Not Here by Dionne Brand (very poetic writing)

Books I want to read because I’ve read something else I’ve liked by the author:
– A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius by Dave Eggers (I read his book of short stories How We Are Hungry and could hardly get enough)
– Numbers in the Dark: And Other Stories by Italo Calvino (I read If on a Winter’s Night a Traveler — a wonderful book about the art of reading with many twists and turns)
– Serena by Ron Rash (This is his fourth book, the first of which he’s getting a lot of publicity, but he’s been around a long time and from what I’ve read — The World Made Straight — this guy knows how to write. Also, I very fortunately got the chance to meet him and he’s pretty much the nicest guy ever.)

Classics I haven’t read and feel as though I cannot graduate as an English major without reading:
– Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf (I know, I’m horrible…)
– Middlemarch by George Elliot (The likelihood of my finishing this before the summer’s end: not very strong)
– On the Road by Jack Kerouac (Okay, I think I could graduate without reading this… but I’d rather tackle this before Middlemarch.)
– East of Eden by John Steinbeck (My friend Jane almost choked on her lunch when I told her I haven’t read this. Therefore, I will read this for you, Jane.)

Purely cover-shopping:
– The Selected Works of T.S. Spivet by Reif Larsen (Apparently it has cool pictures inside… I’m in.)

– Little Bee by Chris Cleave

– Fire to Fire by Mark Doty (Actually just finished this and it blew my mind. BLEW MY MIND. Will be revisiting for years to come.)

Books I’m waiting to come out in paperback (because I can’t afford hardback):
– Yellowrocket by Todd Boss
– The Story of Edgar Sawtelle by David Wroblewski (Oprah’s freaking out about it so I guess it’s worth a read… maybe…)

Alright, that’s it. I probably go on forever, or at least twenty more books, but my iced coffee is starting to look a lot more interesting. Besides, aren’t I supposed to be researching? Actually, I think I’ll break open one of these books instead…