Maugham: The Appointment in Samarra (1933)

This is included in the Kennedy/Gioia “Introduction to Fiction.” I asked Marna and Barb about when they found the time to read, as it’s been now years since I’ve really given reading any time in my schedule. They read first thing in the morning, and right before bed. I’m desperately trying to cling to anyContinue reading “Maugham: The Appointment in Samarra (1933)”

Sex Books, Day 1: The Story of the Eye & The Story of O

And so we begin by speaking of love. The tamest, most secret longings our hearts felt in grade school. We stray at some point, a million stories left untold. But, we reach today, when our fresh stories are more interesting to us than our stale ones. And then what? You get involved in stories of loveContinue reading “Sex Books, Day 1: The Story of the Eye & The Story of O”


Note: I don’t know anything about Communism, Socialism, China, or Russia. Seriously. Certainly I fell in love at once with the poetry of Li Po and of Tu Fu, but aside from that very little has struck me in Chinese history as memorable, just the endless succession of names and dynasties, it struck me quiteContinue reading “China”

novel: Maugham: The Razor’s Edge (1944)

I claim to be a writer if I’m pressed for a real answer, something better than “drug dealer.” But the follow-up question is always brutal: what do you write? Well…I used to consider myself a short-story writer, and then I thought I was writing a novel that turned out to be poetry…and what now? LoveContinue reading “novel: Maugham: The Razor’s Edge (1944)”