shaken & stirred

welcome to my martini glass


friday ...

The Alien Cold of the Planet Forever is still hanging on so blame any lack of coherence on that. Perhaps there will be a few listy things soon, maybe there won't. Hard to say at this juncture. Should my head ever begin to drain, I'll be working on the new book again.
-- Excellent Daniel Handler interview in the LA Weekly (via Moorish Girl and Beatrice). As I've said here many times, I'm a huge fan of Handler's work, both the Snicket stuff and his novels. And so the best, best, best part of this interview to me is this admission: I just finished a new novel for adults. Yay! The only bad thing about the success of the Snicket books is that they've probably delayed this somewhat. Also:
"Melodrama," Handler laughs — he’s actually been laughing quite a bit, but I don’t know that it has anything to do with me — and downs the last of his icy bourbon as I drain my perfectly room-temperature Oban scotch, 14 years old, complex, aromatic, wonderfully peaty, with a hint of sea salt.
While I'm curious as to Handler's choice of bourbon, I can vouch for the joy of Oban. I've seen some pretty amazing personality shifts brought forth from a few slugs of Oban, but really, it's also fun to say once you've been drinking it. Oban. O-ban. Ooooo-bahhn. Oban. McLaren, back me up?
Handler also says some true, true, true things about children's literature at the moment and as someone who has been reading a lot of it (not to mention writing it), I'd like to call your attention to them:
"Children’s literature," he continues, "is getting a lot of attention right now, and there’s also a lot of experimentation happening. Another children’s author told me that she thought it was like rock & roll in the ’60s — that all of the sudden everyone’s looking at it, and there’s money being made from it, and because there’s money being made from it, that the people who are sort of minding the gates are allowing a lot more experimentation.

"I’m not enough of a historian of children’s literature to know if that entirely rings true, but certainly it’s a time when . . . I mean, if you read 12 novels published for teenagers that are out by major publishers right now, the amount of experimentation — in terms of subject matter, style and language — is just way to the left of the same 12 novels that are gonna be published during the same period by the same publishers but for adults. There’re novels from the point of view of fetuses. Feti? Fetuses. And characters who go blind without reason midway through the novel. And all sorts of things that, if you were writing that for adults, you would only be published by some crazy, leftist, independent press, at best. And instead, if you write that for children, you’re being published by Simon & Schuster."
-- Mad Max Perkins points to Dan Wickett's interview with Mike Magnuson, who uses cycling as a metaphor for writing:
You ride bicycles, when you do get hurt, you’re REALLY gonna get hurt. We’re talking about skipping your body over pavement at fairly high speeds--20 or 30 or 40 miles per hour--and while you may walk away from such a crash, you’ll be limping. Definitely. And bleeding. And you’re gonna be a hurting unit for days and weeks and sometimes months or the rest of your life….So you get injured, you don’t feel sorry for yourself. You heal and get back into shape and get out there and ride again.

I’d say the experience is identical to publishing books...
There's more.
-- And Carl Zimmer at the Loom -- fast becoming on of my favorite blogs -- talks about the danger of overestimating the importance of intelligence. Speaking of which, I don't care if it has Jim Carrey in it. The Unfortunate Events movie will be seen.
That's all for now.
p.s. For some reason, blogger is dumping line spaces some places and not others. I can not control this. If you can, tell me how.


  • At 1:21 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...


    One of the six Classic Malts.

    In 1890 a cave was discovered behind the Oban distillery containing Mesolithic human remains. I am not making this up.

    Mr. Mc. (running a few weeks late)


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