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Jun. 12th, 2006 @ 03:43 pm and now for now
Current Location: Hsinchu, Taiwan
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Because I don't know how long it's going to take to get the Edison spirit quest entry done.

So. I'm in Taiwan. If you are in Taiwan also, give me a call at 0989201311. Non-Taiwanfolk are welcome to call me, also, if you can afford it--but I I'm afraid I won't be able to return your calls if I miss them.

Every now and then I read a book so good it disheartens me, because it makes me realize how far yet I have to go to be a really good writer, and Paul Auster's Leviathan is one such book. At first it seems unremarkable, but by the end of the first chapter or so you realize that's exactly the point. It's about a writer writing about a writer who blew himself up, but the postmodern writerly pomposity ends there--everything is told with stark, yet not at all minimalist, simplicity. It sounds like the kind of story your fisherman or lumberjack uncle would tell you, if your fisherman or lumberjack uncle just happened to have a habit of being unintentionally brilliant all the time. Auster deliberately breaks all the workshop rules: he tells instead of shows, he summarizes, he writes seemingly extraneous writerly asides, his dialogue is intentionally artificial, he avoids the kind of witticisms and beautiful diction that would get you checks and check-plusses from professors. And because of this, not in spite of it, he manages to pull together a story more magnificent than a workshop could ever put together. Auster is a writer with nothing to prove--there are no skillful technique flourishes, no silly structural gimmicks, no showoffish narrative voices--but there is a masterful subtlety to his work, in his omission of detail and his seamless character development and his seemingly rambly, but powerfully deliberate prose. He has transcended technique; he writes from the soul of storytelling. If a young writer is a fencer, watching for openings and eager to pull off clever attacks and ripostes and masterstrokes, Auster is a ninja assassin, killing you with an ugly, brutal strike before you are even aware the fight has begun. His characters mock young writers like me mercilessly--our showing off and our directionless meandering, and our incessant need for validation--and coming from talent like his, it is not insulting, but humbling.

There's a little raccoon-tailed cat snuggled up against my laptop, lying asleep with the cord of my USB mouse nestled between its paws. It is making odd beatboxing noises with its teeth, as if it is dreaming about being in an a capella hiphop group.
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dd2guy
Jun. 12th, 2006 @ 11:49 pm information wants to be free
Current Music: http://www.muzie.co.jp/download/155608/songs270/vo-01.mp3
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Do your part to take down Big Brother--post censored material on your website so that people in countries where the Internet is monitored can google it. The more people do this, the harder it will be for the Man to keep it under control.

(Music is 上を向いて by 公.)
About this Entry
dd2guy