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Making Contact

I’m with Mr. Yagoda on this one. My readers, too, are silly to think they have something to say worthy of my attention! Wanna reach out to someone? Call your mother. You claim you’re not complaining, Ben, but why hide your disdain? With readers like ours, who needs stalkers? Maybe instead of writing books, it would be safer to keep a journal.

18 thoughts on “Making Contact

  1. Yes, but, Shya, don’t forget, there’s always the chance that a funny Filipino might send you a silly little note to brighten up your day. What fun to giggle at his charmingly awkward English!

    1. Good point, John. I shouldn’t underestimate the capacity of third-worlders to provide a little entertainment. Too, I suppose I shouldn’t discourage their stabs at literacy!

  2. Nope, not with you.

    My fan mail (I’ve got exactly three “fans” who contacted me in response to the writing rather than my own social networking) is possibly the most humbling and meaningful thing that’s happened to me related to writing.

            1. The NYTimes book review I use to build fires and my fireplace- and that’s about it. I used to read it…I sort of stopped is what I’m saying.

  3. if i ever get to a place where i get fan mail i will respond with random messages from the heart. like a story about my sister beating me up when i was an infant. it will bring us closer together.

  4. I am happy to have read this article if for no other reason than I now have a term for the type of writing I’ve been annoyed with for some time now: where people make themselves do something or experience something so that they’ll have something to write about. I don’t know why it grosses me out so much. I’m know such projects have been going on for ages; it just feels like there’s so damn many of them now. The tone seems to be: I will set a task before me (cook all of Mastering the Art of French Cooking, read the encyclopedia, do everything Oprah tells me to do) and then the easy task will be to record what I do, i.e. write the book.

    Anyways this NYT article gave me a word for this trend: stunt writing.

    1. What’s especially annoying is when the stunt writers (stunt writing often just strikes me as shitty scholarship) appropriate others’ struggles and parrot (while sometimes also diluting) the arguments those communities have been putting for forever w/o crediting them, claiming the insights as their own.

      See: Barbara Ehrenreich

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