shaken & stirred

welcome to my martini glass


finally friday hangovers

1. I'm still completely psyched about the next Best American Short Stories containing "Stone Animals" and "Hart & Boot." (And I'll also coyly tell you that I think it's going to be one of the strongest volumes in that series' history.) Here's why, mostly, besides the fact that it's cool on so many levels when writers of consistently excellent fiction are rewarded -- especially when they're your friends: when I was a kid, I read this book every year without fail. Maybe not every story, but every year our local library got this book and I'd read most of it. Later I actually started buying it (my favorite editor so far has been Amy Tan). Most years, kind of eh. It thrills me to think of some young (or older) reader or writer picking up this volume, maybe they too pick up every year's edition, and having their head completely blown open by a story like "Stone Animals." That rocks. Related: Matt Cheney reacts.

2. Sarah Weinman posts about one of her favorite young adult books -- Julian F. Thompson's THE GROUNDING OF GROUP SIX (I'm told you must use all caps). It sounds like the kind of thing I would have loved (as someone who actually practiced the teacher terrorism proposed in 13 Ways to Sink a Sub), but I'm not sure I ever read it. Must seek out now, definitely. Sarah's post was prompted by a discussion over at the Old Hag's place, itself prompted by the uncovering of a treasure trove of vintage Lois Duncan covers.

3. You are reading Maureen McHugh's endlessly fascinating and funny blog about her Hodgkins experience, right? Her latest brill post about feeling like a Cindy Sherman artwork shopping in one of her wigs is not to be missed.

4. You middle grade writers out there might be interested in the Ursula Nordstrom Fiction Contest at HarperCollins, which seeks to "encourage new talent in the writing of innovative and challenging middle grade fiction." Deadline info, rules and restrictions found at that site. Winner gets a contract. (Via Greg Writes.)

5. The Little Professor has a meme (gasp, it's that word again) on naming all the writers you've read more than 10 books by. This one's going to take some thought.

6. Laurie Anderson's show inspired by her time at NASA as artist-in-residence (one of the writers in my old screenwriting workshop works at NASA and got to meet her, even) is open for business. It's called "The End of the Moon" and the site sez: "Drawing from her NASA-inspired travels and research, impression-packed journals, dreams, and theories, Anderson takes us on a music-theater journey that examines, among many other compelling themes, 21st-century perceptions of beauty and time, and the stories we exchange to help us along the way." More info or buy tix here. (Via Voltage.)

That is all. Go forth and behave as you would.


  • At 12:27 PM , Anonymous Tim Pratt said...

    I was re-reading through the Amy Tan volume of Best American Short Stories last night, and it is good. I'm a devoted reader of the Best American Poetry every year, but I'm pretty erratic when it comes to reading the short story volume, mostly choosing to buy or not on the strength of the guest editor. Guess I'll read it this year, though!


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