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From an e-mail from Richard Hell: Yo, Travis -- Listen, last night I looked at the interview. I'm pretty inured to ignorant journalism, and the second half of my double take regarding your introduction to the interview took about twenty minutes to fully develop, but once it occurred it was energetic enough that it resulted in the attached annotated version of your intro. Dude, I don't know what remedy there is for your condition but some hard knocks.
The first time I played the Book Lover�s edition at a friend�s house, it was so hard that the non-bibliophiles went scurrying back to the safety of the Nintendo Donkey Kong Bongos. This time I would be ready for a real test. I searched out the most rabid book-loving professionals I could find, those who eat plots for breakfast and dream ISBN numbers. I didn�t anticipate that when we divided up teams according to our respective factions of the publishing world, the trivial would become deadly serious. Booksellers, publishers, academics, and the dreaded media; who would claim the title as top book bad-ass?
"[Zoloft]�s not like a cure-all. It�s not a happy pill. I went to Bosnia and what I really learned was to reconnect with people. For whatever reason, that�s where it happened. And I don�t recommend it at home, going off to a war zone. But you need both sides of the coin. It depends on how long you�ve been depressed and how severely. But if you�ve been depressed for ten years and you go on medication, you feel a lot, that�s the beauty of it. Go on living. But you�ve created this personality that is used to living this way, and it might be self-destructive or not exactly beneficial to the way that you want to live, and that�s where it�s great to go into therapy. But I think they only give you 20 sessions or something. I don�t know what it is. My health insurance gives me nothing."
Hortus proposes to address garden writing as a literary genre, while also including a healthy dose of articles on plant selection and care. This means that you can find everything from a poem about pomegranates, an A-Z of Pacific Northwest gardening (which includes everything from plants to plant hunters to �J is for Junk�), to a seasonal review of plant varieties for all sorts of climates. From there you find all sorts of articles exploring what Wheelers describes as �the beating heart� of gardening. This is garden writing about Nathaniel Hawthorne, the conflicting definitions of prickles and thorns (an article which includes references to everything from The Passion of the Christ to Christina Rossetti) and plant collecting in East Africa.
"More than a few characters in Job Hopper are superiors who treated me with contempt or rudeness and now that I'm the great and powerful authorini, I'm in a position to expose their crimes to a wider audience. But it's not funny if all I do is accuse people who had more power than I of treating innocent little me poorly. I have to out myself as a crappy waitress, a purloiner of office supplies, a loafer, a personal phone call maker. I was actually a pretty good artist's model, but I poked a few holes in that balloon by reporting on the ridiculous back stories I invented up there on the platform to motivate my poses -- and most of them involved feeding a goat."
author Barbara J. King responds to Mary Eberstadt's Home-Alone America: The Hidden Toll of Day Care, Behavioral Drugs, and Other Parent Substitutes
Barbara J. King
Now I like Bill Bryson and his clever travelogues and unique amalgamation of British wit and American observation but his droll bantering with a character or two doesn�t help when you�re knee deep in central London trying to get from point A past the queue to edible food and reasonable drink. Not to mention that Bryson is the best of the lot. Most British travel guides are the literary equivalent of all those Working Title pictures like Bridget Jones where people walk past Piccadilly Circus every time they step outside, the same guides that won�t tell you that you can have the same 30-pound bus tour they praise for a handful of change on the regular bus line.
"So science expanded my vocabulary and encouraged my looking. I like to look at everything, to scrutinize. Even sand grains. Bits of mica. My work is intensely visual. Science also reinforced a sense of tragic complexity, the morally questionable nature of the universe revealed by reason. I think science whispered "translate, turn a thing into something else to preserve it." Genotype, a set of instructions, yields phenotype. Science has led me to think of poetry in terms of DNA, the concise language with a tiny alphabet that expresses us. Language travels forward, outliving the body. Our work is translation: world into word."