Wednesday, June 14, 2006

O. Henry Awards - Prize Stories 1989

My story ‘Peacocks’ became part of a novel, Winterchill, which made me realize another possibility for the short story form—chains of stories, where each sets up reverberations against the other, where what isn’t said in the space between each story is almost as important as what is said within the stories’ boundaries. I’m not the first to discover that, of course, but happening upon it, because of those demands my characters set upon me, turned out to be a great release.
Ernest J. Finney

Finney took first prize in the 1989 O. Henry Awards for short stories, and I read his story ‘Peacocks’ in this compilation of all the prize winning stories from that year. My favorite was ‘The Watch’ by Rick Bass, not because of the subject matter but because of the prose. I think I’ll find what else he wrote and get it. Other tidbits:

Art is to reality as wine is to grapes.

…kissing someone is actually sucking on a long tube the other end of which is full of shit.
David Foster Wallace, Here and There

Sunday, June 11, 2006

The Boys from Brazil by Ira Levin

A decent audio book that was fun to listen to. A little far-fetched, but hey, what’s a few Adolf Hitlers among friends. I’m sorry, even if there were 94 genetic duplicates of Hitler growing up in the 1970s, I think the odds of one of them becoming a monster like Hitler would be pretty slim. To argue otherwise is to argue that what made Hitler the monster he was were his genes and the fact that his father died when he was 13. There may have been more to it than that. Like, oh, I don’t know. How about getting elected Chancellor of Germany? Without that, how many Jews could he really have killed? It was still a fun read. Do you like the apples?