Archive for Literature

2018 Pulitzer Prizes

The various categories are presented along with the winners and runners-up. For the shorter forms of writing (as well as photography and cartooning), links to the full works are given.

Here is the heartfelt speech from Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey for their work on unmasking Harvey Weinstein.


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Charles Dickens

It is appropriate that on this day, his birthday, we point you to some good sites containing relevant works. For his books, come here; for the journals he edited and wrote for, you can visit Dickens Journals Online.

There are numerous mentions of his travels and speeches in the United States in the Chronicling America site. He came to this country twice, in 1842 and 1867; the first trip produced American Notes for General Circulation (1842), a work that generated tepid reviews on both sides of the Atlantic.

Numerous helpful sites can be found here.

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Science Fiction Christmas Stories

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Interviews with Ishiguro Kazuo, the 2017 Winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature

Interviews with this author can be found at NPR, several are in this book, The Guardian, Der Spiegel, and YouTube to name a few.

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Happy Hobbit Day!

For those who have enjoyed JRR Tolkien’s The Hobbit (This work celebrated its 80th anniversary of publication on September 21) and the Lord of the Rings trilogy, September 22 marks the birthday of Bilbo Baggins and his nephew Frodo Baggins. Of course they were born in different years  – 1290 for Bilbo; 1368 for Frodo.

I so remember receiving the boxed three-volume paperback set of LOTR for Christmas in either 1966 or 1967; I read the entire trilogy over that break. In fact, it is one of the few series I have re-read over the years, not counting the times I read the volumes to various girlfriends. (I did a very credible Oliphant roar.) Now my children have had the pleasure of discovering this fully-realized world. Maybe I’ll go back.

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Brian Aldiss, 1925-2017

He was one of the seminal writers (along with Michael Moorcock and J G Ballard) who ushered in the British “new wave” of science fiction. I eagerly looked forward to his work, remembering his challenging novels from the 1960s through the late 1990s. It must also be stated that he was an influential editor, anthologist, and non-fiction writer.

Biographical information about him can be found in this entry from the Encyclopedia of Science Fiction. Obituaries can be found at The Guardian, The Washington Post, The New York Times, and Locus.

Remembrances are at Ansibleinterviews are on YouTube; here is a great interview from 2015 from The Telegraph.

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“Nine-Eleven” from “The Writer’s Almanac”


You passed me on the street
I rode the subway with you
You lived down the hall from me
I admired your dog in the park one morning
We waited in line for a concert
I ate with you in the cafes
You stood next to me at the bar
We huddled under an awning during a downpour
We dashed across the street to beat the light
I bumped into you coming round the corner
You stepped on my foot
I held the door for you
You helped me up when I slipped on the ice
I grabbed the last Sunday Times
You stole my cab
We waited forever at the bus stop
We sweated in steamy August
We hunched our shoulders against the sleet
We laughed at the movies
We groaned after the election
We sang in church
Tonight I lit a candle for you
All of you

Courtesy of The Writer’s Almanac

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