Wednesday, October 1, 2008

With All Due Respect

Its not that I don't respect the man, but James Joyce isn't for me. I get that he is tremendously talented and we should take notice to his writings. However, I don't get the joy some may and do from his stories. I just don't, period.

But I know these feelings won't pass for a worthy blog entry so if searched the web for the dirt on Mr. Joyce in hopes that I could find something that may make him an interesting figure to me. (I know one could point to his life-story, but honestly I've had my fill of Norton Anthology-style biographies as has every other English major.)

So what could I find? Here are a few interesting things:

1. Three restaurants/pubs came up when I googled Joyce, but sadly none of their sites gave a reason for the name, which could be for a couple of reasons:
a. James Joyce is Irish and they serve Irish cuisine.
b. It's a simple marketing tool to draw us English geeks in and..
c. Eventually waste our degrees away when we become bartenders. (Honestly, I have worked with at least a dozen bartenders who had English degrees...yeah I know its scary.)

2. I came across an article from Time magazine featuring Joyce as one of the 100 Most Influential People of the Century. In this article while one can be impressed with his recognition, others can see a narcisism that is just digusting. You can find the article here:
I may be completely wrong, but its a little pretentious to expect immortality from your writing.

3. Over 800 videos pop up on YouTube when you enter his name. My personal fave is the amount of Spanish videos that pop up in the search results.

Overall, I get the respect and I'm still not a fan in the slightest. Sorry.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Inspirational Sources

It took me awhile to realize what I wanted to do and I spent time coming to the conclusion that finishing college with a degree in English with a concentration in writing. I have had so many different jobs in so many different fields. My inspirations are usually related to tying all of the ventures of my life together. So here are a few of those sources: Their clothes are truly works of art and they enlist artists from all different genres to help design t-shirt graphics. One of these artists is Ashley Macomber and her art is inspirational to. You can find her at: One of her works is displayed inside the cover of the Deftones 2003 self-titled album. The name of this piece is "Bandaged Love," here is that link: This picture describes the kind of love and relationships we all experience. To me it suggests that life is just not easy and we must love our damaged partners and selves.

It would be wrong of me not to speak of the joy and sarcasm that come from being a fan of I'm sure you've heard of it, but I love it so damn much!

Since I am also such a huge sports fan, it would be disappointing if I didn't mention the always funny site DJ Gallo has gone out and created a phony sports website dedicated to poking fun at the whole sports world including the fans. When I read his page, it lets me know that I don't have to try so damn hard to be creative (but I do and usually fail). He just plucks humor out of random moments and makes it work.

(This also reminds me of something I need to say. I was so damn impressed with all of my classmates work and kind of jealous. Seriously, you guys are talented and you should all never give up on your craft. You all rock!)

Finally, another form of inspiration I use, but with varying degrees of success, is the idea that "there is no such thing as original thought." It comes from a philosopher whom I can't name for the life of me, but the idea is not as depressing as it sounds. For instance, if you get all jammed up trying to think of something overly clever and you end up with writer's block just you use it as mantra to get over yourself. What you are trying to say has been said so just write! (I hope this can work a little better for on our in class writing assignments.)

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Chuck Klosterman's First Fiction

After writing many successful nonfiction books, Chuck Klosterman has written his first completely fictional novel. For those of you who read Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs, or any of his other books, this will still feel like Klosterman's style which has served as an inspiration to me and provided many laughs and deep thoughts. Here is an excerpt from his new book:


Sunday, September 14, 2008


Whenever I'm in class, I hear about the many books my classmates have read and I am always wowed. I'm such a terribly slow reader, but this may be out of a need to dissect and truly understand. This not to say that my peers aren't getting the same information or better out of the work, but I labor into details and themes a lot. Of the authors I most admire, I'd have to say Kurt Vonnegut is still the man and his work still draws me in every time. My personal favorite of his work would have to be Breakfast of Champions. Of course we had mentioned in the first class that Chuck Palahniuk is very popular now, especially with more of his books turning into movies. His novel Survivor is amazing and a great read eveytime. Another author who I am reading is Junot Diaz, who's The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao is my new favorite. I know that Jezmarie remembers the Campbell MacGrath's Capitalist Poems from Creative Writing last year. These all imspire me and help to push my boundaries in tought and in writing. Here are some links for these authors: