Category Archives: Uncategorized

My dream library | 01.19.12

Just sayin’

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The End of the World

This is, of course, a mostly accurate estimation of how we can expect the world to end.

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Sometimes you should probably stay home

I was driving earlier. Maybe it was yesterday. I’m not really sure.

In any case, I was overly tired. Way too overly-tired…

I went to adjust the recline angle of my seat, which seemed innocuous enough. I sat forward and pulled the lever.

Nothing happened.

The lever might have stuck a little, or maybe I didn’t pull it hard enough. Either way, the seat did not budge.

So then, for the briefest, tiniest, most minute fraction of a second — i.e. just enough time for my heart to skip a beat and my adrenal gland to give me a shot in the chest — I was completely convinced that, rather than simply adjusting my driving recline angle, I’d actually just pulled my seat’s “EJECT!” lever.

No fucking joke. I seriously thought that — as sure as the sky is blue and the Sun is hot.

For a split second, I truly expected to be discharged violently through the roof of my car and then parachute back to terra firma.

I repeat: way too overly tired…

Sometimes you should probably just stay home. For real.

Owens Educational Services’ Annual Fundraiser, coming up!

This might perhaps be surprising to some, but this blog post will actually not be about me– not entirely anyway.

Owens Educational Services (OES), the non-profit side of the family biz. (The Owens Companies), is having its annual Diamonds in the Rough fundraiser, which has, traditionally, been pretty awesome!

Tickets are $45 in advance, $50 at the door, however, since OES is a non-profit company, $30 of that $45/$50 is tax-deductible. If you check out the link here (or above), you can read what OES is all about. But in a nutshell, this branch of The Owens Companies educationally provides independent living skills for state wards and at-risk youth, especially those in need of credits for graduation.

It’s a good cause, good food, good music and it’ll be, hopefully/ as usual, a great time! Tell everyone you know and head down to Miller’s Landing on September 2nd. See you there!!

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Latest Cat13 News!

If you haven’t had a chance to check it out yet, hop on over to The Rumpus and read my essay: “Where I Write #12: A Stable in the Floodplain” (don’t forget to click the link in the last paragraph to see how bad the floodwaters are in Nebraska and Iowa).

For the upcoming issue of Grey Sparrow Journal, I have been promoted to associate editor– exciting!!

Over at InDigest Magazine, I will soon be taking over as Blog Editor while I continue reviewing films. Very killer! (My latest review for the film One Lucky Elephant should appear soon.)

I’ve also picked up a couple sweet new gigs at PANK Magazine as well: I’m reviewing books and serving as a first reader for submissions!! (My review for Johannes Göransson’s new Entrance to a colonial pageant in which we all begin to intricate will be posted on the PANK blog on July 8. Reviews for Adam Novy’s The Avian Gospels, Christian TeBordo’s The Awful Possibilities and Darby Larson’s The Iguana Complex will be forthcoming soon after.)

All in all, I’d say this summer is off to a really good start!!

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Two Quotes, with respect to recent international developments

UPDATE: Rather than just remove the post, I thought I’d add an addendum:

Out of Osama’s Death, a Fake Quotation Is Born

“I mourn the loss of thousands of precious lives, but I will not rejoice in the death of one, not even an enemy. Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.”
(- attributed to Martin Luther King, Jr., real author unknown)

(via Kyle Minor, HTML Giant editor): “Happy that bin Laden was caught. Sad that he is not alive to face justice. Conflicted about the idea of public mass celebration of someone’s death. Grieving for the lost lives on 9/11. Grieving, too, for atrocities that followed on either side. Worried about the future, which doesn’t seem more secure, here or abroad. Hoping that human beings can find a way to coexist more peacefully.”

PANK Magazine and Me, we go together like peas and carrots

A month earlier than I thought they would, PANK Magazine published my short story “Contemptibly, A Hair” today! Head on over there and check it out!!

http://www.pankmagazine.com/contemptibly-a-hair/

Upcoming posts alert

So I’m sort of meta-blogging today– meta, in the sense that I’m blogging about what I’m going to be blogging about– mostly so you guys don’t think I forgot about you out there!

Firstly, why aren’t more people reading literary journals? The Paris Review is relevant again, there are few if any annoying ads in most journals, and they are chock full of really great stories and essays without all of the B.S. of commercial rags.

Secondly, how does one make blogging fun again and not feel like a chore? There are so many things I want to say but when i sit down at the keyboard, many times it feels like a burden. How do people go about remedying this?

Thirdly, a list is forthcoming: Books you probably aren’t, but should be reading.

Finally, I’m having trouble with a story (http://www.fictionaut.com/stories/joseph-m-owens/mr-twitchy), more specifically, I’m having trouble finishing this story. I’m not sure what’s working and what isn’t. I’m not sure where people see the story going or ending, BUT I certainly am curious. How would you like it to end? I’m going to write up a few endings, post them here and let people choose which one they like best, how’s that sound? Here’s all I’ve got [with respect to one potential direction the story could go]:

OMG, is he back from the dead? In a word…

…Yes.

Apologies for being missing in action for like a bajillion-trillion days– though it only just seems like that; I hear I’ve been absent for like ~2 weeks. 11 days. 10 of those days I was almost certain I was awash in the swamp of the dead (for the dead are never awash in anything beautiful like valleys– regardless of what you may have heard– or meadows or even mountain springs. No, I was awash in the swamp of [near-]death).

So OK, now what? I’m back. Great. Well for starters, it means I’m reading an writing again. In theory. This is the first thing I’ve written and, consequently read, in the past 10 days so you’ll have to forgive me. It just feels great to be occupying a room other than my bedroom for a change.

And so then ANYway, in essence of stopping this whole shpiel/ramblage, take a look at what I’ve acquired via good ol’ US Postal Service over the last week!

All kinds of NEW! McSweeney's, New Yorker, Atlantic, New Millennium Writings, American Literary Review, and Jim Shepard's NEW collection of stories!

 

 

And a NEW iPhone 4 for Verizon

Tweeted literary news roundup, 02/03/2011

More on book turmoil: http://authorsguild.org/advocacy/articles/how-apple-saved-barnes–noble.html

Karen Russell on the Persistence of the Novelist http://huff.to/gWFQ1u

Broke? Tired of Joyce Carol Oates? Go to the Fake AWP! http://pulsene.ws/XGvo

Very good recs here: A Reading List for the Egypt Crisis http://nyti.ms/fE9sYs

Laura Hillenbrand’s WWII book Unbroken topped the NYT’s first nonfiction E-Book Best Seller list http://mbist.ro/gjbhZV

Looking at the Looker and the Lookie and Thinking About the Looking and the Looking – http://htmlgiant.com/?p=56965

Ben Yagoda reported on “a whole new strain of bad writing” for the Chronicle of Higher Education. http://at.pw.org/i8ogCu

Mark Twain’s autobiography is incoherent, in just the way that he thought good writing should be. http://bit.ly/eisnzu

“I remember feeling a weird, uncanny sympathy with the cockatoo riding a bicycle.” Karen Russel on ‘Swamplandia!’ – http://tpr.ly/fbvUnO

New blog posting, Ask the Author: Karen Munro – http://tinyurl.com/5u6xgnx

Bloody horrors and serene beauty: On Sarah Bakewell’s NBCC-nominated How To Live http://bit.ly/f3CQ0O

Petrushevskaya’s scary fairy tales published in Britain: http://bit.ly/eGpGBR

“Make Believe That You Got a Free Throw”: Red Auerbach on Writing – http://htmlgiant.com/?p=56957

“Fiction that creates a kind of truth.” — On Ismail Kadare’s The Three-Arched Bridge: http://bit.ly/hs8TJV

Eric Martin reviews Donald Rumsfeld’s book (without reading it): http://bit.ly/gUaN8v

Reports of Borders death “greatly exaggerated” – http://ow.ly/3PE80

Fan translates Russian Lord of the Rings rewrite, revealing bloody & unrecorded consequences: http://mbist.ro/gFHEHD

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