Saturday, April 14, 2007

A couple of literary notes:

* So long to Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. I have nothing to say that hasn't been said more elequently already by someone else closer to him, but Slaughterhouse 5 is one of my favourite books and one of the few I've sought out on audio because I thought it would play by ear even better.

If you haven't heard Ethan Hawke read it, go buy it. There's also a nice interview with Vonnegut at the end.

* The recent news that David Sedaris fudges his facts and characters isn't really news, is it?

As a former newspaperman responsible for writing our paper's columns, I never intentionally fudged the characters or facts of my pieces. I would have felt I was taking liberties that wouldn't have been appreciated by my readers.

However, having read Sedaris, I never remotely considered that every bit of his work might be factual. It simply would have been too convenient and too miraculous.

Do I feel cheated now to know this to be the case? Oddly enough, I do -- and I think it's because Sedaris chooses to work in "nonfiction" when he's clearly not. I'd also believe those writing him cheques would take kindly to a head's up on stretching the truth, but then, maybe Davis thought they were all in on the joke already?

Change your labels, David, and you lose your problems.

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