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Goodbye, Clarice / New Work

February 27th, 2014 by Dustin Parmenter · 1 Comment · #NowReading, Beautiful Words, New Work

Have you ever begun reading a book that you thought was going to be great, only to find yourself losing interest within the first one hundred pages? Of course you have. It happens, and sometimes – especially if you’re a blogger who promises a review of said book – it’s rather inconvenient. The book practically fell from my hands after C. Lispector spent her thirtieth page describing her mental state in reaction to the cockroach in her former maid’s quarters. I’m just not in the mood for solipsis, I guess, or the ambient sort of thing she was going for. Or something. One of the things I’m trying to work on in my own writing is narrative structure and progression – basically, how to move things along. I too can dwell for damn near forever, muse on minutia till kingdom come, but if you’re not telling a story – or at least leading the reader to believe that you are – you’ll surely end up losing your audience. Or at least that’s my fear with my own work. So, in short, it’s really not “Goodbye, Clarice” – it’s “See You Later.”

Just about the time when I put down The Passion According to G.H., I started watching HBO’s new series crime drama, True Detective. It’s easily the best thing on television right now – a noir-y, psychological thriller set in rural Louisiana, the show features Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson as partnered detectives trying to find a serial killer. It’s like a mix of The Wire and Twin Peaks; how can you resist?

Classic Marty (Woody) & Rust (Matthew)!
Classic Marty (Woody) & Rust (Matthew)!              

The series is written solely by a fella named Nic Pizzolatto, who happens to be a novelist. He wrote a book called Galveston which I’ve just finished reading. It features a lot of the same themes and structural elements as True Detective, but I’d say he realizes his vision more fully in his television series. Not that it’s not worth reading. For a sample of his work, check out two short stories he’s got published in the Atlantic, here and here.

Lastly, I’ve got another fiction piece for y’all. It’s a little ditty about leaving Chicago. I’m fond of the piece for many reasons, and I had a lot of fun writing it, but I’ve been told that it “falls flat.” I’d love to disagree, but I can’t be the reader and the writer. Check out the piece here, and let me know if you think it works or it doesn’t in the comments section.

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One Comment so far ↓

  • Meg

    obvi loved it. really confused me in the beginning though because I thought there were only two characters for the story, and I didn’t realize there were three until the end.
    l o l

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