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Everyone is talking about Birds of a Lesser Paradise, but everyone should be talking about Megan Mayhew Bergman.

Do you think fiction can inspire social change? Should it strive to?
I think it can, it has, but it shouldn’t always strive to. Fiction is a big house, and too many big ideas and agendas might chip away at the pleasure art brings us. But absolutely — I think art can model pain and consequence, and should.

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Speaking of quintessentially American stories, there’s something almost pulp-fiction-esque about your work. I.e.: if your subjects were “ripped from the headlines,” they’d be ripped from the back pages of stuff you find in comic book shops, books with titles like Weird Tales and I Was A Teenage Werewolf. To be specific, you have characters making B-movies, suffering from leprosy, performing psychic surgery, to name just a few. Having said all this, your treatment of these subjects isn’t sensational in the tabloid sense, but fairly realistic. What draws you to these characters, and how do you find the human in the fantastic?

After reading this interview with Lysley Tenorio, I am so going to read him. Now.

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Poor little rich author: this episode starring Laurell K. Hamilton.

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A very frightening app, Write or Die, uses negative reinforcement to encourage writing.

Consequences:

  • Gentle Mode: A certain amount of time after you stop writing, a box will pop up, gently reminding you to continue writing.
  • Normal Mode: If you persistently avoid writing, you will be played a most unpleasant sound. The sound will stop if and only if you continue to write.
  • Kamikaze Mode: Keep Writing or Your Work Will Unwrite Itself

These consequences will persist until your preset conditions have been met (that is, your time is up or you’ve written you wordcount goal or both)

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Four words: This Side of Paradise

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Cathie at Bark decides which books to buy each of the Avengers if they were her boyfriends. No, seriously.

Dr. Bruce Banner (aka Hulk aka Hulkykins)
The book I’d give Bruce for his birthday: “The Art of Happiness” by the Dalai Lama. We would read it together while listening to Enya. We’d maybe light some aromatherapy candles, too. Who knows how crazy we would get.

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Super Sad True Habits of Highly Effective Writers: Part 1

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The Top 10 Best Books With the Worst Amazon Customer Reviews includes three of my all-time favorite books: Lolita, The Great Gatsby, and Anna Karenina.

On Lolita:

“Lolita, or the confessions of a murderer and panty sniffer” is the most famous novel of Vladimir Nabokov, one of the (inexplicably for me) sacred cows in twentieth century literature. A masterpiece of the English language for some, a manual of pedophilia for others, or just a plain overrated novel for the rest”.

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Some figurative language for, y’know, those of you who don’t teach high school English and don’t eat, sleep and breathe figurative language all day every day.