Suspend Your Disbelief

Posts Tagged ‘lit and art’

Shop Talk |

Lit map your city

The hip folks over at The Rumpus recently posted a map of San Francisco drawn by Rumpus contributor Ian Huebert comprised entirely of literary quotes. The powerful triumvirate of map + literary quotes + very cool handwriting has me sold. According to The Rumpus, you can get your hands on the map through Electric Works Gallery. While I can think of a half-dozen books set in San Francisco off the top of my head, I wonder if this project could be turned toward your hometown? How about a literary map of Charlotte, North Carolina or Lincoln, Nebraska? The fictional locale […]

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The Universal Activity

You may not know photographer Steve McCurry by name, but you probably know his famous photo “Afghan Girl.” (In fact, McCurry is so respected in the photography world that he was given the very last roll of Kodachrome ever produced.) On his blog, McCurry offers a photo essay of readers from around the world, from shoe sellers to Buddhist monks: Everywhere I go in the world, I see young and old, rich and poor, reading books. Whether readers are engaged in the sacred or the secular, they are, for a time, transported to another world. It’s not clear from the […]

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1,000 Words Are Worth a Picture

Here’s something I hope becomes a trend: illustrated short stories. The Creative Company produces illustrated versions of classic short stories, each bound as its own beautiful mini-book. With titles that recall 11th-grade English, like Frank Stockton’s “The Lady or the Tiger,” Twain’s “The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County,” Poe’s “The Cask of Amontillado,” and Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery,” these books are geared towards in-school use. Writes The School Library Journal: Each book contains the story itself with various sections written in different colored fonts. Then there is a series of thoughts on the story, and finally a biography of […]

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Book Lamp, Literally

Designer Martin Konrad Gloecke has designed a book lamp that uses your own book as a lampshade—and functions as a bookmark. Writes Gloecke on his website: wall light. complete lamp by adding book as lamp shade. remove book for reading, change lamp by changing book, use as bookmark. part of un-readymades series: inspires, encourages, and enables creativity, play, product interaction, and personal expression. And if you like that, check out Gloecke’s “Booked” table—a set of legs that attach to your own book to form an end table. Via GalleyCat and FYB.

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Library Art (Literally)

Shelved books, in and of themselves, can be quite decorative, but perhaps you’re looking for book-themed art that’s more… frameable. No problem. On Etsy, artist Jane Mount will create a custom painting of your “ideal bookshelf.” (Via.) Writes Mount: It can include up to 22 books of your choice. All you have to do is send me a photo of the full spines of the books together on a shelf, large enough that I should be able to read all the authors, titles and publishers. If you don’t have them all together you can take photos of them separately and […]

Interviews |

Literary Mentors & Friends: An Interview with Charles Johnson

Charles Johnson taught creative writing at the University of Washington from 1976 to 2009. He is the author of numerous books, including the National Book Award-winning Middle Passage. Zachary Watterson, one of Johnson’s former students, talks with his mentor about the literary friendships that have influenced the author’s more than forty-year writing career.

Reviews |

Long for This World, by Sonya Chung

The cover of Sonya Chung’s debut novel, Long for This World (Scribner, March 2010), shows a young woman gazing out over a wide ocean, raising a camera to her eye. Chung’s main character is a photographer, but that’s not the only reason this cover is so apt. The novel unfolds like a collection of intimate snapshots, telling a story of loss and unexpected renewal.

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In Defense of Comic Novels

In the art world, comedy seldom gets its dues: if it’s funny, many assume, it can’t also be “real” art. At the Oscars a couple of years back, Will Ferrell, Jack Black, and John C. Reilly lamented the plight of “A Comedian at the Oscars”: “the saddest man of all / Your movies may make millions, but your name they’ll never call.” Something similar happens in literature, Erica Wagner points out in the UK’s Times: Comic novels — let’s call them terrific novels that happen to be funny — tend to fall through the cracks, especially where prizes are concerned. […]

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Shady Side Review Postcard Contest

The Shady Side Review is having a postcard contest. They’re seeking the best poetry or prose of 100 words or less. Winners will have their work published on–what else?–postcards. The submission deadline is March 17, and each entry is $1. From the Editors: What can you get for a dollar these days? A newspaper (but they don’t usually publish fiction unless you’re famous. Are you famous? Maybe your work is already in a newspaper then.) A bagel (but unless you carve your poem into the dough, your work does not appear here). Eternal fame and glory (this can be achieved […]

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Postcards from Penguin: 100 Book Covers in a Box

I can think of a bunch of uses for these supercool postcards featuring vintage Penguin covers. You could use them as snazzy thank-you notes to writer (or reader) friends. You could tuck them into gift books as bookmarks, or let them serve as reminders for books you’ve been meaning to read. You could tack them up above your desk as inspiration (“Note to Self: Write a book like The Great Gatsby“). Or you could frame them and hang them en masse to make great wall art. Those in the UK have had access to these for a few months already. […]