Thursday, April 28, 2005

Books & books to come

Just finished Jhumpa Lahiri's The Namesake. As usual, I seem to be the lone dissenter. This is why I don't read many novels: I can't be happy with great writing as proclaimed by the pundits. I found all the interior monologues of the characters in this book to sound exactly alike. Seems to me a cardinal sin for a novelist to slur characters together. I read novels primarily to read characters. Didn't make it for me. I went back to the Anns and Annies: Patchett, Tyler, Packard, Proulx, Lamott. (So is it an Ann thing? You can't be a really great novelist if your name is, say, Rachel?)

And waiting for my book, Femme au chapeau, to appear. Why won't my publisher give me a pub date? And why did the Matisse Estate take so very long to approve our cover design? All my best laid plans for press releases, etc., have to be redone. I had a release for the locals for National Poetry Month. Tore that one up today, April 28. I'm afraid I'll suddenly get a box of books on my doorstep, and feel like an involuntary adoptive mother ...

Reading Ann Packard's The Dive From Clausen's Pier, which reads like memoir. Waiting to hear from my agent about current responses to Rocket Lessons. And thinking about the value of memoir in a society which prizes American Idol above all other tv programs (or so it seems). My tv producer friends writing a parody of reality shows as we speak ...

It seems to be a day for three-dot journalism ...

HAPPY NATIONAL POETRY MONTH!