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where I'm blogging now...

is mostly here:

http://fictionwritersreview.com/blog

But I'll keep visiting LJ land and might occasionally post something non-bookish at draft table.

Fiction Writers Review is live!

Check it out!! Read, comment, submit, and join the fun.

http://fictionwritersreview.com

Apt. 4: a preview

view from living room of our bedroom

Our new apartment is beautiful. You can see more pre-move photos taken last Saturday evening here:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/58038820@N00/

We're still unpacking and calming the felines down, but soon we'll have photos of furnished-ness.

living room

Aaron and my bedroom

Rob"s bedroom (door leads to private bath)

two magazines

The Atlantic's 2008 Fiction Issue is here!



I'm running to the nearest newsstand to buy it, but I'll only re-subscribe when they return to including a story in every issue. (I could vent about how furious this still makes me for hours...the Atlantic used to publish, hands down, the best new stories available anywhere, including beautiful work by completely unknown authors. Now they publish a lot of long, excellent features that I can't finish because I'm too angry that there isn't a story for dessert.) But yes -- the 2008 Fiction Issue! -- Buy one now or check it out online; there's web-only access to past fiction issues, an archive of literary interviews, an article about top MFA programs, and more at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/200808

And if you haven't yet heard about Heeb's Notorious Issue, it features a kitschy swimsuit calendar of the chosen:


[photo by Gilles Bensimon]

Bilingual West Side Story!


[PHOTO CREDIT: LEO FRIEDMAN]


Arthur Laurents will direct a darker, grittier -- and bilingual! -- revival of West Side Story; previews begin in February of '09. I am really excited to see this production.

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/17/theater/17bway.html?ex=1374033600&en=989ec1d2955a0b86&ei=5124&partner=permalink&exprod=permalink


Also, on a totally unrelated note, I want one of these. Or at least I want to throw one at all the people freaking out over how this will sexualize their daughters. Um, see also: ALL BARBIES.

http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/news/article1428128.ece

movin' on up(stairs)

Details on the new apartment have been requested, so here they are:

2.5 BR, 2 BATH on the fourth floor of our current building. Hardwood floors, big windows. The foyer/hallway is significantly wider than our current apt.'s, and when you first enter, Rob's bedroom is on the right; it's a lovely, big room with a nice closet and its own private bathroom. Continuing down the hall, you'll run smack into a little but highly functional kitchen (with cabinets! at last!) which is open to the living room (though separated by a bar/half-wall); the living room is large and gets lots of light; we're having an accent wall painted a slate-greenish-gray. There are some built-in storage shelves (like a pantry, sort of). To the left is an entrance to the second bathroom. Straight ahead, through double-doors, is Aaron's and my bedroom, which has a painted-over decorative fireplace. In that bedroom are two additional smaller doors -- one a second entrance to the bathroom, the other the entrance to a little office space/dressing room with a closet. From the windows, we can see the NYC skyline. And we'll all get thighs of steel walking up four flights of stairs...brings back memories of Chelsea.

Photos to come!

Also, Oliver and Tally may not know it yet, but they plan to blog about their adventures in co-catitation. Tentative title: Who The Fuck Is This Fucking Cat?
http://blogs.guardian.co.uk/books/2008/06/why_writers_cant_go_it_alone.html

While I agree with this article -- that indie (or self-published) books get shorter shrift and far less cred than indie films and indie music -- I'm surprised that neither the author nor his commenters mentioned one pretty obvious difference: their potential to sell, period. Everyone goes to the movies, and everyone listens to music, and if an indie film or album is a break-out hit, it's likely that a whole hell of a lot of people will pay to see it or listen to it. But when you look at even a "best-selling" book, how many people are really reading it?

I hate this, of course, and I hate that this leads to what the entry and comments do discuss -- how scared and snobby and tied to big houses we wind up being. Unlike music and film, the book (and I mean here the book read for pleasure) has to justify its existence; publishing fiction itself, even at big houses, seems like an "indie" pursuit.

the sound of silence

This last month's utter blog failure can only be explained as such:

I had out-of-town guests for about 1.5 weeks, went on a theater-going spree with said guests, then embarked upon an apartment search across Brooklyn (that ended when we signed the lease for an apt. on the 4th floor of our current building), then realized I was so far behind at work that sleep was no longer an option. And now it is mid-July!

FWR is coming along slower than I'd hoped, but I do have piles of good content (from a bevy of contributors) nearly ready to post. The launch will be soon, folks.

In the meantime, enjoy
this cartoon-essay about the books you're supposed to read and the circle of hell reserved for those who do not read enough...hey, they're not as bad as usurers.
This link is stolen/imitated/what-have-you from Kathryn's blog, but it is too good to not pass on.

Background: Italian composer Giorgio Battistelli has been commissioned to adapt An Inconvenient Truth into an opera, and NY Times writer John Tierney had significant fun crafting a fake letter from the composer to Al Gore in response to fictional notes on a draft. Hilarious! Enjoy.

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/17/science/earth/17tier.html?ex=1371441600&en=3f1c5f35bf2425c5&ei=5124&partner=permalink&exprod=permalink

a dish by any other name...

For the summer Olympics, Beijing hotels and restaurants are rewriting menus, giving dishes Western-friendly names. Personally, I think this sucks. And not just because "chicken with no sexual life" makes me very, very curious. Couldn't they just add brief descriptions below the names instead of replacing them?

http://www.cnn.com/2008/WORLD/asiapcf/06/19/olympic.dishes/index.html?eref=rss_latest