An American Poem by Eileen Myles

New favorite. 

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Review: The Fortress of Solitude

I just finished reading Jonathan Lethem’s The Fortress of Solitude; it was excellent. Here’s a link to my Goodreads review. 🙂

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Ellen Page on representations of women

“Izzy – like all of Page’s roles – is a tough, independent woman who isn’t there just to bolster the leading man. Does Page feel a responsibility to seek such roles out?

‘Yeah absolutely,’ she replies before I finish the question. ‘Also if I played those other kinds of roles I would just die a slow death. But yes, I think it’s really important, but it can be hard. Only 23% of speaking roles in films today are for women. It feels we’ve gone backwards.’ Partly in response to this, she has started writing her own script ‘which is definitely feminist – definitely. But of course, if you just write a script in which the woman has control over her destiny and love isn’t the main thing in the film, that’s seen as super feminist.'”

The Guardian

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Currently Listening, Vol. 1

1. Janelle Monáe – Dance Apocalyptic I’ve been a huge fan of Monáe going all the way back to 2008’s Metropolis EP; she’s got an insane voice, sick moves and a ridiculously cool sci-fi aesthetic that is like, 100% up my alley. The latest single definitely doesn’t disappoint; it’s the second track from her new album The Electric Lady (the first, Q.U.E.E.N. feat. Erykah Badu, is also crazy good), which is set to drop Sept. 10. I am obviously so beyond stoked.


2. Kate Nash – Fri-End? To be honest, I’m not super-enthused about Girl Talk, the actual album, but the concept is solid and I do love the fact that she just clearly does not give a f*ck what anyone thinks. There are a few catchy ones, though, so it’s not a total loss. “Fri-End?” is probably my favorite, if only because I appreciate her commitment to wearing those vampire teeth for the entire music video.


3. Lady Lamb The Beekeeper – Hair To The Ferris Wheel Disregard the questionable moniker; this song is out of control. It starts out as a slow-burning folk jam but when the tempo picks up it’s super catchy. Um, definitely not for everyone but if you’re into indie rock and in the right mood she’s got a bunch of good stuff (see also Up The Rafters and  Bird Balloons).


4. Alabama Shakes – Always Alright  Either you already know, or you’ll never know.


5. Joan Jett – Crimson & Clover The most badass cover, for real. Joan Jett is the shit. Although “Bad Reputation” will always be the “Freaks and Geeks” theme song to me, which is a terrible thing to admit, I realize. Did you guys see The Runaways with Kristen Stewart and Dakota Fanning as Joan Jett and Cherie Currie? Fantastic role for Stewart, who I am fairly obsessed with as a person even though her acting can be questionable. But that’s totally off-topic. Here:


Thus concludes volume one of “Currently Listening,” which will probably be just as regular a feature as everything else I post, i.e. there will probably be another one in six months/never.  Sort of like Bob Dylan’s book, although I still haven’t completely given up hope for Chronicles: Volume Two

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A. Lee Martinez on subversion, deconstruction and parody

This post popped up on my Goodreads feed a while back and I’ve been meaning to share; Martinez is one of the most entertaining writers out there and I especially recommend checking him out if you’re into sf/fantasy. Here he pretty much echoes my thoughts on the necessity of unapologetic and unironic enthusiasm for fantastic stories. Also the line “I am not cooler than dinobots because NOTHING is cooler than dinobots” is an excellent life motto. 

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Deadfall, or, the best bad movie you will ever watch on Netflix

Last night started out as an ordinary lazy Sunday night, until I stumbled across this post on Twitter and everything changed:


As you may or may not already be aware I think Charlie Hunnam is pretty much the greatest thing to ever exist, and I ran out of Sons of Anarchy seasons to watch on Netflix a while ago so this movie seemed like a decent substitute.

But Deadfall turned out to be one of the greatest bad movies I have ever seen, and I truly mean that as a compliment. It’s actually not really a “heist thriller” at all, as no actual heist ever takes place onscreen, nor is one alluded to after the first 30 seconds of the film. The heist is just a catalyst to set in motion an impressive series of terrible decisions; every single character is an enormous screw up, and every time one of them tries to fix something they just end up making it worse for themselves.

Spoilers ahead! I would recommend watching this movie if you’re entertained by hilariously bad things, otherwise I am happy to break the plot down for you.

Continue reading

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Lev Grossman’s Blog

Grossman’s The Magicians and The Magician King are magnificent, it’s awesome to get a sneak peek at the process behind the final book in the trilogy. His thoughts about being “in the thick of it” definitely apply to novel writing, but also seem relevant to any long-haul creative endeavor.

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