Some rare photos and interesting backstory to LIFE’s portrayal of the literary world’s Papa.
Originally posted on LIFE:
That Ernest Hemingway was, for years, the most celebrated writer in America is hardly surprising. After all, if he had written nothing besides, say, The Sun Also Rises, the early collection, In Our Time, and the magisterial “Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber,” he would still be an utterly indispensable American writer. The preposterous and romantic literary myth that Hemingway himself created and nurtured, meanwhile — that of the brawling, hard-drinking, thrill-seeking sportsman who is also an uncompromising, soulful artist — ensured that generations of writers would not merely revere him, but (often to their own abiding detriment) would also try to emulate him.
And yet most readers, when pressed, might well name a slew of other authors, living and dead (Faulkner, Bellow, Cormac McCarthy) who, across the years, crafted more varied and more consistently excellent work than Hemingway’s.
So … despite what countless acolytes might claim, Hemingway was not the greatest American writer of the 20th century. He was, however — and more than five decades after his death, he remains — the single most influential, most parodied, most prominent, most immense American author of the past 100 years.
I am writing this morning, after somewhat of a dry spell, and then found myself reading this. I needed to read it. It is wonderful.
Originally posted on BREVITY's Nonfiction Blog:
I have a friend, a single man in his late forties, who still broods over the love he didn’t get—still doesn’t get—from his emotionally inaccessible parents. They are the cause of all his suffering, he believes, the cause of his failed relationships. Even as I nod compassionately over our herbal tea, I want to shake him and scream, “They’ll never change! Don’t waste any more of your life! Get a new story!”
But if I’m honest, I know that—after years of writing about my own family—I’d really be screaming at myself.
There is an issue with uploading to Flickr right now, so I thought I’d update my own site for once with this random self-portrait. Continue reading
Elusia and I woke up at 4:30 this morning, not on purpose. We both couldn’t sleep, each of us needlessly worrying about projects we’re working on. After a couple hours and a shower, I decided to grab our Nikon D90 with new lens and take us outside to shoot the sunrise. We ended up across the street at the neighborhood playground. She’s got quite the eye for photos. Here are a handful of mine I felt like sharing.
This is what happens when a University of Maine professor — my former adviser there and the editor who published my first story in Echoes magazine — retires. She experiments with beer. In her garden, with two fists clenching brown bottles of Bud, she slugs it down the garden patch. Continue reading
I received my first issue of One Story this weekend, the magazine of only — you guessed it — one story. I was introduced to One Story by one of its readers, James Scott, when he months ago manned a table at a bookstore panel of local literary magazines. He urged me to subscribe, and, finally, I did. One Story makes no pains for cover art: Just the title and author. I understand they change the color of the cover sheet. The story inside is what matters. Continue reading