July 26, 2006

Return to Edit Hell: The Sequel

I have received my editorial letter from Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers! Huzzah! I should be working, but I'm not! Again, huzzah!
(Apparently procrastination among writers is catching...)
Let the time-wasting be unconfined! On with the dance!

Kudos to Fuse #8 for pointing out my newest timewaster site: Book-A-Minute, which cheerfully and succinctly ultra-condenses everything you've not got the time to read. My favorite example so far?

The Collected Works of Anne McCaffrey
-----------------------------------------------

Ultra-Condensed by Christina Carlson

Female Lead
I secretly love Male Lead. He must never know.
Male Lead
I secretly love Female Lead. She must never know.
(They find out.)

THE END

Which pretty much sums up, with deep and painful irony, everything our Anne has ever written, and made me snort my tea. Quel amusant.

Have you ever wondered how a book makes the cut to become part of the literary canon? I have, and apparently some teachers have, too. The Miami Herald this weekend discussed what makes a classic in children's books -- one reader thinks Catcher in the Rye isn't a classic, and a classics professor from the University of Miami names Winnie-the-Pooh in favor of the Potter epics as classic literature. Classics, by Professor Phillip A. Russo's lights, have to be old in order to be classics. Catcher isn't yet old enough, but it will get there. Quoting 18th century author Samuel Johnson, who, when writing about Shakespeare 150 years after his death said that "length of duration and continuance of esteem" are the only earmarks of a classic, Russo doesn't even yet include Joyce, Faulkner or Hemingway in that category.

I don't really adore Catcher; Holden Caufield gets on my nerves. But Holden Caufield did something for millions of people who read it; it touched a nerve, it shaped a generation of outbursts and rebellious thinking for many. The impact of a novel has got to be worth something. (Thanks again to Fuse #8 for this find.)

And speaking of guys with impact, Cool Boys are being collected on Jen Robinson's Book Page. Final list is Friday, so stay tuned for the results, and if you have a suggestion, make yours today! Ooh, and one more new time-waster: I keep forgetting to tell you to take the Teen Angst Novel Quiz. I took it, and found out that I am a book I haven't read yet. Yay!






What Teen Angst Novel are You? - funny, lots of results, with pix, from the author of The Boyfriend List and Fly on the Wall




PREP, by Curtis Sittenfeld. Thought-provoking, class-conscious, analytical, smartly observant. Sometimes irritating. Go read it. It's you. Happy reading! -- E. Lockhart
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I'll have to tell you if it's "me" after I've read it.

Terry Pratchett's Wintersmith, the next book detailing the adventures of Tiffany Aching, is due in the UK in September... and in the US in October.

I want to move to the UK.

1 comment:

a. fortis said...

I love Book-a-Minute. Rinkworks has other great stuff, too, like the Dialectizer. I have wasted many minutes, or probably hours, on their site over the years...