Monday, April 8, 2013

So Long, Maggie

Well, at least I didn't have to wait very long for that rejection.

It's OK. On Saturday I went for a hike and felt better. I also gathered a list of several other agents to whom to send the package. And I feel a little like since I've written the synopsis, the hard part's over.

In other news, I read Gilead by Marilynne Robinson this week, and really...didn't enjoy it. This is probably the sixth or seventh time I've read a Pulitzer Prize winner and cared almost nothing for it, so I think I'm going to stop using that prize as a basis for whether I'll enjoy something. I think it's a book with tremendous merit, especially for people who are strongly invested in Christian life - and more especially for a subset of those people who are intellectually interested in Christian spirituality - but it's not really the book for me. I wanted more about the characters and their interpersonal issues, and I wanted more there there, but as the book wore on, it became even more about the content of the narrator's sermons and less about the extremely interesting humans who populated the landscape. Disappointing for that reason.

I also read Miranda July's book of short stories, No One Belongs Here More Than You. I didn't like it at first, but it either grew on me or got better. It'll be unbearably hipsterish for some readers, I warn, but for all that she's a creative writer with a fresh style. I want to read more of her work to become capable of dissecting it.

Margaret Thatcher died today. I was raised in a Reaganite household in the U.S., so I didn't grow up thinking of Thatcher as a villain. As an adult I've learned she was pretty dangerously certain of her own positions, and that she didn't really give a damn about the masses, both of which are not good qualities for a national leader, if you ask me. However, I still have a soft spot of admiration for her, despite trying really hard not to (particularly after learning more about the Falklands War). We share a birthday - the Day of the Tough Cookie, according to my birthday book - and I think most women could stand to believe we're as strong as she. Can I justify that?

I've been itching to write all weekend, and after I knock out some work and some chores, I'm going to do just that. I have an essay in mind, and if I can't get any fiction underway, I'll write exercises. The itch is genuinely maddening and only one thing will cool the burn.

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