First round of assignments is over, yippee! And results back for the project presentation I was stressing about the other day — High Distinction for all criteria (again, yippee!), meaning that my 2013 goal to overcome public speaking fears is on track thus far. Anyways, enough self-congratulating. I’m taking this afternoon off research (kind of) and reading the pile of books I have been adding to since March 1. Most, of course, are some sort of creative nonfiction:
Better than Fiction, a collection of travel stories published by Lonely Planet, written by wellknown fiction writers (e.g. Isabel Allende, Sophie Cunningham, Steven Amsterdam, Alexander McCall Smith).
Non-Fiction, a collection of absurd stories by Chuck Palahniuk.
Enduring Love, Ian McEwan. Can’t wait, can’t wait, can’t wait to read this one.
You’ll Be Sorry When I’m Dead, memoir (collection of memoirs) by Marieke Hardy.
The last few pages of The Thing About Life Is That One Day You’ll Be Dead, by the wonderful David Shields, which has blended scientific fact with cultural criticism to present the relationship between Shields and his father. The structure of this book is very clever — as the content moves through the process of ageing — Shields growing up and his father growing old — Shields’s stories about his father are repeated, each time becoming smaller and less fantastical. Shields tells us multiple truths — each telling of the same story slightly altered, slightly frailer. This is Shields’s method of dealing with subjectivity of childhood, adolescence, family ties? I suppose.