If you are going to be a writer

“I believe I will write a novel.” He was sitting in a pool of sunlight recovering from the weekend when the old priest suddenly made this declaration. He said nothing in retort. The sun was too warm for it. It…

Socrates and Me

The way I remember it, sometime during the summer of 1975 I picked up a copy of Ripley’s Believe It or Not comics for 25-cents from the local pharmacy. The cover depicted the ghostly apparitions of a coonskin-cap-wearing frontiersman and…

“The Femme Fatale” in Pyramid Magazine

Pyramid Magazine Noir issue

Pyramid Magazine has published a brief article I wrote on the femme fatale archetype, which is found most commonly in film noir and hardboiled crime fiction. The article also considers attributes and other elements of the femme fatale character that…

Pomo Club

The first rule of Pomo Club is that there is in reality no Pomo Club. The second rule of Pomo Club is that reality is a construct. The third rule of Pomo Club is that language is a key component…

Ronald Reagan died and went to Hell

Ronald Reagan died and went to hell. He was just as surprised about it as you are. He wasn’t expecting a standing ovation but he got one. Many souls enduring torment appreciate a rousing speech. It gets tiresome, all that…

Recursion, Iteration and

I have this idea for a story that is a recursion. In computing, a recursion is a function which repeats itself. It’s like that old kids joke, Pete and Repeat. You say to a friend, “Pete and Repeat were sitting…

The Song of Your Life

Once upon a time Charming Billy asked me, “If you could pick one song to sum up your life, what would it be?” “I don’t know that any one song could sum up my life,” I told him. “I’d need…

The Reader and the Writer

Over near the bar, THE WRITER stands alone, watching the people. He wears brown leather Topsiders with no socks, tan chinos and a Polo shirt under a navy blazer with brass buttons. His brow is furrowed behind dark glasses. He’s…

Bacon on a Doughnut

There’s a bakery around the corner where I often get doughnuts and sandwiches. It’s one of those family operations run by an Asian-American clan who have a stronger work ethic than any white Protestant I’ve ever known. They make a…

A Dance with Dragons

When first reading The Lord of the Rings many years ago, I had the vivid feeling that the length of time it was taking me to read the book was providing me with the visceral feeling of being on an…

The Expendables

The Expendables

The movie ended. We were speechless for several minutes. “That was some messed up shit,” Dennis said. “That part with the shotgun?” I ejected the DVD and slipped it into the protective sleeve. Back to Netflix for you, you beastly…

Wonder Boys

(I originally wrote this review in 1995, long before there was a movie and the book became a bestseller. Back then I had created the first website for Chabon’s work, an archive of which can be found here.) A young…