I am peeking at you from the crest of Thursday, September 11, to say hello and tell you I’ve returned to my post. My hiatus was great (I’ve posted some pics in Glimpse of Solace). Hope the summer had some high points for you.
One recent Facebook craze is to be tagged to name your ten favorite or life-changing books. I am a little daunted by the list because it will show I am not that well read, certainly not as well read as some of my friends with advanced degrees. And the other reason I don’t like making the list is because my favorite author is J. D. Salinger; all of his books influenced me greatly. I had a thing for Holden. I loved Esme and her little brother, knew all the Glasses. Today Salinger has come to mean the author most preferred by homicidal maniacs, the author who had a lurid (maybe even criminal?) obsession with young women, the reclusive weird old guy.
But still I love him. I can’t help it. I know all this shit about him, but I will always have a crush on Holden. Catcher in the Rye inspired me (still does) and it was the first book that spoke to me so much that my friend Mary B. and I wanted to contact the author. We never did.
How strange it might have been if we had. Maybe Joyce Maynard’s story would have hit close to home. I dunno. Anyway, all this stickiness rose to the surface with my being tagged to name my favorite books, well, that and the news about Cee lo Green.
Confliction flares up because my reaction to Cee lo’s voice when he sings “Crazy” or “Forget You” is a lot like how Salinger’s voice hit me. I respond to it, no doubt about it.
That he entered a no contest plea to a charge that he dosed a woman’s drink with Ecstasy was bad, a black mark on his character. But then he tried to explain himself on Twitter and got in even deeper with his remarks on rape.
Can we love the art and not the artist? How can we accommodate our mixed feelings? I’m still figuring that out. What about you?
Contributors to Solace in So Many Words have been busy, but before I tell you about them, let me share with you that the anthology got a new review! Thanks to Dan Burns, Cronin Detzz, and Windy City Reviews, Solace in So Many Words received some love.
As to contributors, Patty Somlo has had a couple of things published lately. Her short story “The Gift” is online in the current issue of Mobius. “In the Afternoon Mail” appears in the summer issue of Sukoon. Patty also just found out that her essay, “If We Took a Deep Breath” was sited as “Notable” in the latest edition of Best American Essays. It originally appeared in Gold Man, an Oregon literary journal.
Congrats to Brent and Patty.
I may not be as well read as many people, but still, I do love reading. My poem about my appreciation of books “Between the sheets” is slated to appear in another textbook; I just cashed the check from McGraw-Hill. I’ll brag some more when the textbook comes out.
You know what else I love? You. Thanks for reading.
Peace, love, and solace
BTW, it’s too ccomplicated to list individual titles, the authors who influence me include: J. D. Salinger, Kurt Vonnegut, Beverly Cleary, Frank O’Connor, Billy Collins, Alice McDermott, Elizabeth Bishop, Carl Sandburg, Joe Meno, Wislawa Szymborska, Louise Penny