blog

the archivist October 29, 2023

Over at Jane Austen’s World, Rachel Dodge has been comparing how Austen’s novels use what have now become standard romance tropes. The end of the series is the Sense and Sensibility’s (double) love triangle. Jane Austen’s World | Jane Austen and Rom Coms: Sense and Sensibility (“Love Triangles”) — We often forget that Thomas Alva […]

the archivist October 17, 2023

Little Things Sharon Olds After she’s gone to camp, in the early evening I clear our girl’s breakfast dishes from the rosewood table, and find a dinky crystallized pool of maple syrup, the grains standing there, round, in the night, I rub it with my fingertip as if I could read it, this raised dot […]

the archivist September 10, 2023

Death of the Hat Billy Collins Once every man wore a hat. In the ashen newsreels, the avenues of cities are broad rivers flowing with hats. The ballparks swelled with thousands of straw hats, brims and bands, rows of men smoking and cheering in shirtsleeves. Hats were the law. They went without saying. You noticed […]

the archivist September 8, 2023

About 18 months ago (in the summer of 1996) I went to see Four Weddings and a Funeral at a North London cineplex. Very soon I was filled with a yearning to be doing something else (for example, standing at a bus stop in the rain); and under normal circumstances I would have walked out […]

the archivist May 6, 2023

Yes, volume 8 was posted before volume 7. Want your money back? The girl who grew up in Pasadena, took the bus, loved her mom, and wrote herself into the world. Vulture | The Spectacular Life of Octavia Butler — With its sweet and loving disposition, combined with silky fur and elegantly droopy ears, the Cavalier […]

the archivist February 19, 2023

The Joy of Writing Wisława Szymborska Why does this written doe bound through these written woods? For a drink of written water from a spring whose surface will xerox her soft muzzle? Why does she lift her head; does she hear something? Perched on four slim legs borrowed from the truth, she pricks up her […]

the archivist January 23, 2023

Wisdom Sara Teasdale It was a night of early spring, The winter-sleep was scarcely broken; Around us shadows and the wind Listened for what was never spoken. Though half a score of years are gone, Spring comes as sharply now as then— But if we had it all to do It would be done the […]

the archivist December 6, 2022

Why did I write it down? In order to remember, of course, but exactly what was it I wanted to remember? How much of it actually happened? Did any of it? Why do I keep a notebook at all? It is easy to deceive oneself on all those scores. The impulse to write things down […]

the archivist November 29, 2022

She was hired by Emily Carr University in an effort to recruit Indigenous faculty. Then questions arose about her identity. The Curious Case of Gina Adams: A “Pretendian” investigation.   How did a simple offer, over a single painting, lead to such a spectacular destruction of someone’s life and career? The answer involves the shifting […]

the archivist October 15, 2022

Writing is not a sexy business. It’s not a rare butterfly that floats down and gently kisses you on the nose with a brilliant idea that conjures a hurricane of cash. It’s frustrating, and it’s lonely, and for most people, it doesn’t pay. But one genre consistently makes it work. Romance writers who are able […]

the archivist August 14, 2022

The Poems of Our Climate Wallace Stevens I Clear water in a brilliant bowl, Pink and white carnations. The light In the room more like a snowy air, Reflecting snow. A newly-fallen snow At the end of winter when afternoons return. Pink and white carnations – one desires So much more than that. The day […]

the archivist July 29, 2022

Cult Classic A Novel Sloane Crosley 306 pages Farrar, Straus and Giroux (MCD) Publication date: ‎ June 7, 2022 From the publisher: Hilariously insightful and delightfully suspenseful, Cult Classic is an original: a masterfully crafted tale of love, memory, morality, and mind control, as well as a fresh foray into the philosophy of romance. MOST […]

the archivist June 23, 2022

A Prayer in Spring Robert Frost Oh, give us pleasure in the flowers to-day; And give us not to think so far away As the uncertain harvest; keep us here All simply in the springing of the year. Oh, give us pleasure in the orchard white, Like nothing else by day, like ghosts by night; […]

the archivist June 20, 2022

Two of our favorite poets around here are Edna St. Vincent Millay and E.E. Cummings, who, despite overlapping in lifespans, hail from two different generations of American poetry. In Savage Beauty, an excellent Millay biography by Nancy Milford, the author reconstructs Millay’s contributions to the 1933 Guggenheim Fellowship award process, in which she recommended up-and-coming […]