I've been scanning old photos and documents for my memoir-in-progress, and going a bit scan-crazy as I dig into my archives. Here are a few interesting literary items I've found.
Does This Happen To Other Litbloggers?
I have no idea why this happens, but I get letters from kids to famous writers. But they don't send the letters to the writers, or to their publishers (which would probably be the best approach). They send the letters to me. Over the years, I've received letters about various writers we've covered here on LitKicks, including Chuck Palahniuk (above), S. E. Hinton, Kurt Vonnegut and Lemony Snicket. I feel terrible about the fact that I never write back. But really, what are these kids thinking? Chuck Palahniuk does not live in my basement.
If any other litbloggers have experienced the same thing, I'd love to hear about it.
Damn! This Was Some Cast
I haven't posted about it as often as I'd like, but I love the New York Shakespeare Festival. Many famous actors and actresses paid their dues there, including Kevin Kline, Meryl Streep, William Hurt, Raul Julia, Christopher Walken and many more. Still, when I dug up this old program for a 1981 Delacorte Theatre production of King Henry the Fourth Part One, starring the fairly unknown Stephen Markle as King Henry and Kenneth McMillan as Falstaff, I was surprised to discover that the supporting cast included then-total-unknowns John Goodman, Val Kilmer and Kevin Spacey, not to mention the then-slightly-known Mandy Patinkin as Hotspur. I vaguely remember Patinkin's Hotspur, and Goodman, Kilmer and Spacey left no impression at all. Damn, that was some cast! I wish I could go back in time and enjoy the play more than I did.
Me Being Pretentious
I always wanted to be a writer. Around ninth grade I composed an apocalyptic novel called The Rain God. I remember that I liked the title very much, and that I had some good ideas for the novel's cover artwork (above). I didn't have a very clear idea what the story would be about, though, as is obvious from this pained first page:
"It was a dry dark beginning. My town is a little town, a farming based society. My father planted Yams. That is, before he died in a flash fire last week."
Forget what those kids who send me letters to writers were thinking ... what was I thinking? My father planted Yams? Hmph.
Then again, on the other hand, is this much worse than Cormac McCarthy's The Road? That's the real question. I guess I should have stuck with the project.