Monday, June 26, 2006

Reading Roundup

Did one quick read over the weekend of a collection of Roald Dahl short pieces. "Lucky Break" was the story of his start as an author, on the advice of C. S. Forrester, and his working pattern when he is writing. Also included was his first story "Piece of Cake", an autobiographical account of being shot down during his RAF service.

Started a Faulkner biographical criticism but haven't gotten too far in it yet.

At home I'm reading a locally published oral history of Whitewater township in Franklin County Indiana, The Stories We Have to Tell. Full of photos as well as the pre-1950 stories collected from residents.

Over the weekend we had the first version of the new "Canoefest" in Brookville, IN. I learned that the Franklin County Historical Society is republishing Reifel's History of Franklin County, Indiana. It will be $75, which is reasonable when you consider that you can't find a copy of the last reprint under $100 and finding an original edition on the market is almost impossible.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Metamora Grist Mill

The Metamora Grist Mill, part of the Whitewater Canal State Historic Site, was featured in a story in the Cincinnati Enquirer on Wednesday, June 14th. The paper is doing a year long series leading up to a HomeGrown Thanksgiving. Each month a local foodstuff is featured, in November they will all be pulled together for a complete Thanksgiving meal.

Neil Simon wins Twain award

Neil Simon wins the Twain Award for American humor

from Jacqueline Trescott's article today in the Washington Post

Neil Simon, one of America's most successful playwrights, has been chosen as this year's recipient of the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor, the Kennedy Center announced yesterday.
For the past half-century, Simon has been prolific and often produced. Everyone of a certain age probably can name numerous Simon works, as his plays -- including "The Odd Couple," "Barefoot in the Park" and "The Sunshine Boys" -- have translated into film and television and into the national consciousness.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Poet Laureate

There was an announcement today that Donald Hall will be named the Poet Laureate of the United States.

Now I would assume, apart from the fact that I really never heard of Mr. Hall, poetry is just not an arena of attention for most of us. I was surprized to read that the position is appointed annually. I guess that I always thought that once you were the poet laureate you stayed there indefinately until either death or age took its toll. Mention was also made of the fact that there are really few demands associated with the position, it is primarily an honorary recognition, with a yearly stipend and travel allowance attached.

Recent Reading

I finished Children of the Flames this past weekend at the shop. The story of Dr. Mengeles eugenics project based on twins at the Auschwitz camp. Memories from narratives supplied by various of the twins survivors involved were alternated with the biography of the doctor. It really brings back to mind the thought--all that is required for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.

I'm reading Florida's Flight of the Creative Class at home right now. He was the keynote speaker at the Indiana tourism meeting in Indianapolis last month but I wasn't able to fit in that trip.

Train Guy is carrying around another Louis L'amour and my brother is working on Shelby Foote's civil war books.