I’m experimenting with this 8tracks site as a way to put up little mixes of songs I’ve been enjoying lately. So far so good – the site is super easy to use and make mixes with, so I think this could be the start of a great new friendship.
Pardon my French, as the French say, but COME ON, Nicholas Sparks. It’s bad enough that you inundate our Barnses and Nobleses with your awful, awful, AWFUL books, and you sear our eyeballs with the horrible movies that get made from said books, but now:
I write in a genre that was not defined by me. The examples were not set out by me. They were set out 2,000 years ago by Aeschylus, Sophocles and Euripides. They were called the Greek tragedies. A thriller is supposed to thrill. A horror novel is supposed to scare you. A mystery is supposed to keep you turning the pages, guessing ‘whodunit?’ A romance novel is supposed to make you escape into a fantasy of romance. What is the purpose of what I do? These are love stories. They went from (Greek tragedies), to Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, then Jane Austen did it, put a new human twist on it. Hemingway did it with A Farewell to Arms.
I’m sorry, did you just put yourself in a category with Sophocles, Shakespeare, Austen, and Hemingway all at once? Are we comparing The Notebook to Electra? Have you ever read Sophocles? He did not write “fantasies of romance.” Unless you count Oedipus Rex, and if you do, that’s just sick buddy. Also, do people actually say “whodunit” out loud, ever? This guy is such a moron even Roger Ebert rips on him. You know you truly suck when even Roger Ebert feels the need to lob some potshots at you. And Ebert’s zingers are just so great.
Then the Lord of the Romances continues:
Sparks pulls [a book] off the shelf. “A Farewell to Arms, by Hemingway. Good stuff. That’s what I write,” he says, putting it back. “That’s what I write.”
Asked what he likes in his own genre, Sparks replies: “There are no authors in my genre. No one is doing what I do.”
Hahahaaaa. Crying and laughing and vomiting together is making my face hurt. I’m sending you my doctor’s bill. Good stuff.
You know, I take it back. I guess you are in a category with the above authors. If the category is “people who use words to construct sentences.” You know who else is in this exclusive club? This six year old kid. Writing books is so easy even a six year old and Nicholas Sparks can do it!
To make matters worse, Nicholas Sparks makes himself a third enemy (the first two enemies are Humankind and Literature, for those keeping score) in Cormac McCarthy by ripping his book Blood Meridian. This man is not even worthy of being on the same continent as Cormac McCarthy. He should be shipped to Antarctica, except then I would feel bad for the penguins. Cormac McCarthy is such a badass I doubt he even gives two shits what some hack like Sparks has to say about him. He’s probably sitting in New Mexico getting drunk and saying, “Nicholas who?” while he spit-shines his Pulitzer. Where’s your Pulitzer Prize, Nicholas Sparks?
Hello! I’m taking some time off of work this week to spend some time with my friends in the San Francisco bay area. It was my birthday on Friday and everyone has been treating me to an incredible BirthWeek so far. We had a great dinner Friday night, and Saturday we went down to Santa Cruz to see the ocean! The waves were HUGE (seriously) and the surfers were out in force. Walking up and down the beach and along the promenade we saw lots of interestingpeople! Sunday morning we went to the Farmer’s Market in downtown Mountain View and got some great food for lunch. Then we “hiked the dish” at Stanford – lots of colorful people there too! The hike was quite a workout and the views were gorgeous. Yesterday we played some board games, including an epic game of Killer Bunnies. Good thing we didn’t let the game get to us and we all still loved each other at the end! Tonight the girls have invited me to their book club, where we will discuss The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. It was a pretty good book! On Thursday I’m heading into the foothills near Sacramento to visit even more of my favorite people! Then I return to the beautifulwinter wonderland of Minnesota (this photo showed up when I googled “lutherans”) and my lovely job. Thanks California buddies for such a great week.
I’m done. I’m sick of Proust. Sick of his rambling go-nowhere prose. All that BS I laid on before? Total crap. My metaphor of exploration was based on the idea that my exploring would be rewarded with some shiny treasure; instead, it just goes on and on and hardly says a thing. I swear I read all of Swann’s Way and it’s all been meaningless. The prose, yes, is beautiful and a joy to read; his way with language cannot be understated enough. The guy knows his way around an epiphanic moment too. But at some point in the middle of saying things, you have to Say Something. The dense, thick language which takes so long to navigate (one paragraph I read was six pages long) must be made worthwhile. And for me it hasn’t been. I’m just bored. Simply bored. Somehow I keep finding book after book to read instead of Proust. There’s a reason that keeps happening. In my mind I keep comparing the book to Tolstoy, whose novels are also very, very long, but who has perfected the trade-off between lengthy ambiance/exposition and plot/character development. Perhaps at another point later in my life I will have the time and patience to enjoy finishing this novel. But for now, it’s just stupid to waste my time reading and reading and reading a novel that I can’t enjoy, when there is so much out there to read that is enjoyable for me. It was a noble pursuit but I admit defeat…for now. You win, Mr. Proust. Zut alors!