Nov 082014

I can’t resist posting this on the blog if only for the line in the title bar and for this shining anecdote about the vapid ex-writing program student. It’s from a review of Denis Johnson’s The Laughing Monsters in the NY Times today drawn to my attention by Marina Endicott on her Twitter feed.


On the plane I was reading this book.

“Do you like Denis Johnson?” the woman beside me asked.

“Yes,” I said.

“I’ve always felt he doesn’t like his characters very much,” she said.

“O.K.,” I said.

She had gone to a writing program, had graduated from a writing program but no longer wrote, possibly because her characters’ demand for respect and compassion became too onerous. She had become an acupuncturist and had a child. Now she and the child were coming back from Cabo San Lucas, where she had attended some sort of acupuncture conference, I think. That part was a little vague, but we didn’t talk much after the child spilled juice all over us.

via ‘The Laughing Monsters,’ by Denis Johnson –

  2 Responses to ““Writing, like old age and Wyoming, is not for sissies.””

  1. IMHO: Considering some of the vapid conversations I’ve had with successful writers “at some kind of conference,” I think I’d opt for an acupuncturist with a lively kid sitting next to me any day, even if it meant orange juice all over me.

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