Bill Knott’s Art Of The “Malignant”?

The enigmatic Bill Knott is at it again.  OK, I already regret the tone of that first sentence; its suggests a ruse, which is probably the last thing (or at least somewhere down on the list?) poet and artist Bill Knott has in mind with his recent online activities.  Since the abandonment of his cult-inducing… More

Reel Art of the Real

The most stimulating films I’ve watched this summer have been documentaries (not necessarily new, but new to me). Here are the top three in order of overall impact (And, yes, I did like Exit Through the Gift Shop, but it inevitably missed the gut check for me): 1. Marwencol. Changed the way I think about… More

All Things Frankenstein

Need some help here. I’ve been listening with continuing fascination and awe, frankly, to the album Spark of Being, the soundtrack, performed by Dave Douglas and Keystone, to Bill Morrison’s cinematic adaptation of Frankenstein. DJ Olive’s textures and Gene Lake’s nervy drumming, in particular, create a a sonic approximation of what The Creature may have felt stumbling… More

How I Got My Name

Last night I saw Amy Grant sing. Also Johnny Rivers and Vince Gill and a 22-year old blues guitarist named Jessica Munn. All of them came as a surprise to me, who had gone to The Station Inn, truth be known to hear Dawn Sears, who wasn’t there. Thus is life born of chance operations,… More

Write now. Write how?

M. Molly Backes, author of the forthcoming The Princesses of Iowa and the Assistant Director of StoryStudio Chicago wrote a phenomenal blog post recently on how to be a writer and, since that’s not complicated enough, how to be the parent of a young writer. An excerpt: Let her fail. Let her write pages and… More

Hooray for Science!

In case you missed it, The Royal Society posted the longlist for its 2011 Winston Prize for Science Books a couple of weeks ago. The list includes 13 books that all look absolutely outstanding, and the shortlist goes up at the end of September before the winner is finally chosen in November. Joan Brady, courtesy… More

The New York Times Magazine Best Fiction Staff Picks:

Curious to know what you think about this list from The New York Times Magazine, Clarity readers. Agree? Disagree? Which of your favs made it? Which amazing game-changers were you shocked to see left off? Nabokov’s Lolita was named the clear winner, but apparently Chabon’s The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay wasn’t too far behind.… More