Monday, March 5, 2012

All the Sweet, Green Icing Flowing Down

[When I was a kid I saw Richard Harris sing MacArthur Park on the Mike Douglas Show. I was smart enough then to know how stupid it was. It is only as we get older that we get stupid enough to think that postmodern lyrics are a sign of intelligence.]

I would like to know when people started writing like this:

"Clouds looked to be splitting on distant peaks, dark rolling bolts torn around the mountaintops to patch the blue sky with grim."

"Patch the blue sky with grim"??? I'm so tired of this. I think Ann Voskamp used up every bit of patience I had for post-modern-influenced language. Say what you mean and mean what you say, darn it. People think it's poetical. Yes, well, fine. Mostly I think it serves to call attention to the writer: "See how smart I am? How literate, how fluent, how artistic?" Paint all the word-pictures you want. Just keep adjectives adjectives and nouns nouns. You're too cute by half. Go read some Hemingway. I'm a Virginia Woolf fan, for crying out loud, but you guys are really pushing me to my limits.

Okay, I'm done.

I'm reading a book that my friend Elaine recommended: Winter's Bone by Daniel Woodrell. I am NOT liking this book at all. It is bleak, and hopeless, and as depressing as it could possibly be. I will finish it because it's what I do, and maybe it will turn around (I'm 30% of the way through), but between the grim storyline and the writer's style bugging the heck outta me I'm not sure if it will improve much.

More later...

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