Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Escaping the Nazis. Head in an oven. Writing.

Quickly, the Favre conference is minutes away. . . 

1. Man's Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl. Very impressive. "He who knows the 'why' for his existence will be able to bear almost any 'how.'" I think I am developing a case of literary/film ADHD lately. For instance, I started watching three movies this week, and abandoned them all halfway through because sleeping seemed more appealing. In this book, I was extremely interested in his personal account of what the concentration camps were like, what his experiences were, how he felt about them, etc., but during the second half, the LOGOTHERAPY half, I got restless. It was fine, and very interesting, but I just felt like the fireworks were over after the first part, if you get me. It's very much worth reading, however, I think all American citizens of this Doctor Phil generation should, actually.

My old life science teacher in high school once said something that I've never forgotten, it was about another student, a girl named Debbie Locy. I don't know the extent of all of her health problems and operations, but I know that they all were serious. Mr. Wogen once said that Debbie was the smiliest person he had ever met, and if she could smile through all her body's health problems, well, then he could probably smile too. I hadn't ever thought of something like that; maybe some people are just happy. I think this book is important in that it explains that through *the worst* sort of situation, a human being can emerge still able to see beauty and happiness (and meaning) in the world. Put simply: many of our problems are ridiculous/quit complaining/be thankful/life is precious.

2. The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath. Again this issue with distancing myself from the writer as a character but not the writer as an author. I thought it was brilliantly written, it drew me in immediately from page one. The literary devices were off the frickin' hook; it was like one, beautiful, horrible, amazingly written poem the whole way through. And I think I've explained how I'm not a poem or metaphor person. . .

Anyway. As a writer I think she was obviously wonderful. As a human being (and later a mother), I have serious issues with her. Those poor kids. (I'll leave it at that).

No, I won't.

God dammit. I walked away from this for seven hours, and now I'm back, unable to just let it lie. This may sound harsh, immature, and reactionary, maybe even a bit on-my-high-horse, but when I read about her repeated suicide attempts and then the last, effective one, I had to wonder, WHY WOULD YOU EVER LET YOURSELF GET PREGNANT? What in the name of God and The Universe made you think that would be a good idea? Her kids were babies; I just want to cry, although they're I'm sure over it and have moved on.

3. On Writing by Stephen King. Favorite. Book. Ever. Is that good enough? It just makes me giddy and excited and happy. I'm so glad he wrote it. I want to ask him a million things about writing, about his stories, and about his early career, this book seemed to take each question I had and then not only answer  but expound on a million other questions that went along with the first set. I love many, many writers for hundreds of different reasons, like Sylvia up there? Loved her book. I do not get her, as a person, not even a little.

King? I get. I always have.