Bad sex award nominees

Filed under: Fun — marcia at 1:23 pm on Saturday, November 22, 2008

Literary Review gives the “bad sex” award “with the aim of gently dissuading authors and publishers from including unconvincing, perfunctory, embarrassing or redundant passages of a sexual nature in otherwise sound literary novels”.

Sex is really hard to write! I don’t normally go for “bad” awards. But these are otherwise good writers (usually) confronting a real writing problem: how do you write sex that isn’t silly, too-graphic, icky, confusing … the list of adjectives goes on. It’s kind of helpful to see what they did wrong (or what they did to rub this one literary journal the wrong way)…

This year’s nominees:
James Buchan for The Gate of Air
Simon Montefiore for Sashenka
John Updike for The Widows of Eastwick
Kathy Lette for To Love, Honour and Betray
Alastair Campbell for All in the Mind
Rachel Johnson for Shire Hell
Isabel Fonseca for Attachment
Ann Allestree for Triptych of a Young Wolf
Russell Banks for The Reserve
Paulo Coelho for Brida

Nominated passage from Allestree’s novel:

“He raised himself to his knees and bent to roll his tongue around her weeping orifice. He was bringing her to a pitch of ecstasy when she heard Madame Veuve, on the landing, put down the supper tray. Whiffs of onion soup strayed over them as he engulfed her. ‘Don’t stop,’ she clamoured; she was nearly there, it was in the bag.”

via Guardian UK


Baseball Jane Austen style

Filed under: Fun,News — marcia at 7:53 pm on Friday, November 14, 2008

The book “Can We Have Our Balls Back, Please” asserts that the British invented baseball, and cites the opening pages of Jane Austen’s “Northanger Abbey” as proof.

On the Colbert Report, Stephen Colbert did a great riff on what Austen baseball would be like. Here is an excerpt: (The video is also below, with the Austen bit as the second segment)

“Austen wasn’t writing about American baseball. It was a Jane Austen version, where the ball is not hurled about rudely, but introduced to the bat through proper channels at a society function. And one does not steal bases like a commoner; one sends word ahead to the next base by messenger, requesting permission to approach at the base’s leisure. Of course, what the bat cannot reveal is that though he loves the ball desperately, he has sworn an oath of loyalty to the glove to whom the ball was promised. So the bat must pretend he hates the ball, swatting at it, though he wishes nothing more than to profess his undying affection, but he can’t, he mustn’t, he shan’t! And so, the bat must retreat to the gardens of his estate and… pine.”

Writer of the future!

Filed under: News — marcia at 12:34 pm on Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Writer inspiration! Watch this video of an adorable French child improvising a strange and imaginative story. I guarantee it will make you a better writer. Do it!

Once upon a time… from Capucha on Vimeo.

(I think “chicken box” = “chicken pox”)


via Boing Boing