Tag: literature

Steinbeck on Falling in Love

Something for all of us to remember…whether we’ve already found love or are still waiting for it to find us.

Originally posted at Brain Pickings:

“If it is right, it happens — The main thing is not to hurry. Nothing good gets away.”

Nobel laureate John Steinbeck (1902-1968) might be best-known as the author of East of Eden, The Grapes of Wrath, and Of Mice and Men, but he was also a prolific letter-writer. Steinbeck: A Life in Letters constructs an alternative biography of the iconic author through some 850 of his most thoughtful, witty, honest, opinionated, vulnerable, and revealing letters to family, friends, his editor, and a circle of equally well-known and influential public figures.

Among his correspondence is this beautiful response to his eldest son Thom’s 1958 letter, in which the teenage boy confesses to have fallen desperately in love with a girl named Susan while at boarding school. Steinbeck’s words of wisdom — tender, optimistic, timeless, infinitely sagacious — should be etched onto the heart and mind of every living, breathing human being.

New York
November 10, 1958

Dear Thom:

We had your letter this morning. I will answer it from my point of view and of course Elaine will from hers.

First — if you are in love — that’s a good thing — that’s about the best thing that can happen to anyone. Don’t let anyone make it small or light to you.

Second — There are several kinds of love. One is a selfish, mean, grasping, egotistical thing which uses love for self-importance. This is the ugly and crippling kind. The other is an outpouring of everything good in you — of kindness and consideration and respect — not only the social respect of manners but the greater respect which is recognition of another person as unique and valuable. The first kind can make you sick and small and weak but the second can release in you strength, and courage and goodness and even wisdom you didn’t know you had.

You say this is not puppy love. If you feel so deeply — of course it isn’t puppy love.

But I don’t think you were asking me what you feel. You know better than anyone. What you wanted me to help you with is what to do about it — and that I can tell you.

Glory in it for one thing and be very glad and grateful for it.

The object of love is the best and most beautiful. Try to live up to it.

If you love someone — there is no possible harm in saying so — only you must remember that some people are very shy and sometimes the saying must take that shyness into consideration.

Girls have a way of knowing or feeling what you feel, but they usually like to hear it also.

It sometimes happens that what you feel is not returned for one reason or another — but that does not make your feeling less valuable and good.

Lastly, I know your feeling because I have it and I’m glad you have it.

We will be glad to meet Susan. She will be very welcome. But Elaine will make all such arrangements because that is her province and she will be very glad to. She knows about love too and maybe she can give you more help than I can.

And don’t worry about losing. If it is right, it happens — The main thing is not to hurry. Nothing good gets away.

Love,

Fa

via Letters of Note

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2012/steinbeck-on-falling-in-love/

Reader Stereotypes

Shamelessly stolen from here: http://laurenleto.wordpress.com/readers-by-author/

Stereotyping People by Their Favorite Author

by Lauren Leto

(by the way – I respect every author on here, kind of)

J.D. Salinger

Kids who don’t fit in (duh).

Stephanie Meyer

People who type like this: OMG. Mah fAvvv <3 <3.

J.K. Rowling

Smart geeks.

Jack Kerouac

Umphrey’s McGee fans.

Jeffrey Eugenides

Girls who didn’t get enough drama when they were younger.

Lauren Weisberger

Girls who can’t read. Or think.

Jonathan Safran Foer

30somethings who were cool when they were 20something.

Jodi Picoult

Your mom when she’s at her time of the month.

Chuck Klosterman

Boys who don’t read.

Chuck Palahniuk

Boys who can’t read.

Christopher Hitchens

People I would love to hang out with.

Leo Tolstoy

Guys I want to date.

Fyodor Dostoevsky

Guys I want to sleep with. (The difference between the two Russian
authors lies in the fact that I think the Underground Man is sexier
than Pierre Buzukhov).

Christopher Buckley (or William F. Buckley)

People who love excess verbiage.

Ayn Rand

Workaholics seeking validation.

David Foster Wallace

Confirmed 90’s literati.

Jane Austen (or Bronte Sisters)

Girls who made out with other girls in college when they were going through a “phase”.

Haruki Murakami

People who like good music.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

People who can start a fire.

Nathaniel Hawthorne

People who used to sleep so heavy that they would pee their pants.

Charles Dickens

Ninth graders who think they’re going to be authors someday but end up in marketing.

William Shakespeare

People who like bondage.

Mark Twain

Liars.

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

People who drink scotch.

Joseph Conrad

People who drink old fashioneds.

Dominick Dunne

People who get their class from Vanity Fair.

Anne Rice

People who don’t use conditioner in their hair.

Edgar Allan Poe

Men who live in their mother’s basements. Or goth seventh graders.

Michael Crichton

Doctors that went to third-tier medical schools.

John Grisham

Doctors that went to medical schools in the Dominican Republic.

Dan Brown

People who used to get lost in supermarkets when they were kids.

Dave Eggers

Guys who are in the third coolest frat of a private college.

Emily Griffin

Women who give their boyfriend marriage ultimatums.

Richard Russo

People whose favorite day in elementary school was “Grandparent’s Day”.

Anais Nin

Librarians.

Margaret Atwood

Women whose favorite color is hunter green.

William Faulkner

People who are good at crosswords.

Jackie Collins

Your drunk stepmother.

Nicholas Sparks

Women who are usually constipated.

James Patterson

Men that score a 153 on their LSAT exam.

Sylvia Plath

Girls who keep journals (too easy).

George Orwell

Conspiracy theorists (too easy).

Aldous Huxley

People who are bigger conspiracy theorists than Orwell fans.

Harper Lee

People that have read only one book in their life and it was To Kill
A Mockingbird (and it was their assigned reading in the ninth grade).

Nick Hornby

Guys who wear skinny jeans and the girls that love them.

Ernest Hemingway

Men who own cottages.

F. Scott Fitzgerald

People who get ARM mortgages.

Vladimir Nabokov

Men who use words like ‘dubious’ and ‘tenacity’.

Friedrich Nietzsche

Sommelieres.

Bret Easton Ellis

Foo Fighters’ fans.

Hunter S Thompson

That kid in your philosophy class with the stupid tattoo.

Cormac McCarthy

Men that don’t eat cream cheese.

Thomas Aquinas

Premature ejaculators.

Pearl S. Buck

Women whose favorite president was Harry S. Truman.

Toni Morrison

Female high-school English professors that only have an undergraduate degree.

Thomas Pynchon

People that used to be fans of J.D. Salinger.

Elizabeth Gilbert

Women that liked the movie “Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood” but didn’t read the book.

Rebecca Wells

Women on the East coast that wish they were from the South.

Tama Janowitz

Cougars that went to an urban college in the 80s.

Alice Sebold

People that liked Gilmore Girls – even in the first season.

Michael Swanwick

Men that argue that Neil Gaiman is overrated.

Terry Goodkind

People who have never been dungeons master but still play D&D.

Stephen King

11th graders who peed their pants while watching the movie It.

H.P. Lovecraft

People who can quote the Comic Book Guy from Simpsons.

Brothers Grimm

Only children with Oedipal complexes.

Lewis Carroll

People that move to Thailand after high school for the drug scene.

C.S. Lewis

Youth group leaders that picked their nose in the 4th grade.

Elmore Leonard

People that know how to perform a “Michigan left”.

Shel Silverstein

Girls that can’t spell “leheim”.

Douglas Adams

People who bought the first generation Amazon Kindle.

Tucker Max

Guys that haven’t convinced their girlfriends to try anal yet.

Alexis de Tocqueville

Political theory and constitutional democracy majors.

Tom Clancy

People that skipped school by hiding out in the gym.

Herman Hesse

People that own one straw chair in their house.

Phillippa Gregory

Women who have repressed their desire to go to Renaissance Festivals

Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Men that can’t lie but will instead be silent if they know you don’t want to hear the truth.

Susan Wiggs

Older women who are surprisingly loud during sex.

Nicole Krauss

Girls that intern at Nylon but end up moving back to the Midwest for their real job.

Mitch Albom

People that didn’t go to college but do well on crossword puzzles.

Stieg Larsson

Girls that are too frightened to go skydiving.

Sue Grafton

Women that have an @aol.com email address.

Seth Grahame-Smith

People that own a smart phone which requires a stylus to use it.

David Baldacci

No one. Even the police say Clancy before they’ll say Baldacci.

Michael Pollan

The girl that just turned vegan to cover up her eating disorder.

Andrew Ross Sorkin

People who refer to themselves as “playing devil’s advocate”.

O. Henry

Men that have names like Earl or Cliff and were really close with their paternal grandfather.

Virginia Woolf

Female high-school French teachers that have their master’s degree.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2009/reader-stereotypes/

Literature

Overheard at a forum at Powell’s with Philip Gourevitch, Editor of the Paris Review:

“Every thing you’ve ever read is a gross reduction of reality” 

     -Philip Gourevitch
 

 

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2006/literature/

2006 Nobel Prize in Literature

As somewhat expected, Orhan Pamuk has won the 2006 Nobel Prize in Literature.  I’ve only read one of his books, Snow, but I did like it quite a bit.  (My Review)  I’m curious to read more of his works and will probably be picking more up soon at Powell’s.

In other literature prize news, Kiran Desai won the 2006 Man Booker Prize for her second novel The Inheritance of Loss, winning a prize her mother has been shortlisted for 3 times.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2006/2006-nobel-prize-in-literature/

2006 Nobel Prizes

So far this year all the Nobel Prizes have been awarded to Americans.  The Medicine, Chemistry, Physics and Economics Prizes have all been announced.  This is likely to change as of Thursday, when the Literature Prize is announced.  Why?  Well for starters, three of the last four prizes have gone to people writing in English.  It is highly speculated that this years prize will go to someone writing in another language.

English betting site Ladbrokes.com has the current odds as shown below the cut: 

Continue reading

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2006/2006-nobel-prizes/