Las Vegas, NV
May 20, 2020
Garrison Keillor hits Las Vegas with a new solo show!
April 18, 2020
Garrison Keillor comes to the Rochester Civic Theatre for a night of stories, songs, poetry, and humor. Tickets $50 and up
February 19, 2020
Garrison Keillor with Heather Masse at the Dakota. Night 2 of 2. Tickets $30+
February 18, 2020
Garrison Keillor with Heather Masse at the Dakota. Night 1 of 2. Tickets $30+
by Rose McLarney
Text of this poem not available
“Full Capacity” by Rose McLarney from Forage. Penguin Books © 2019. Audio used with permission of the author. (buy now)
It’s the birthday of the novelist Haruki Murakami (books by this author), born in Kyoto, Japan (1949). Murakami is the child of Japanese literature teachers, but he was more interested in American literature as a boy. He studied literature and drama at Waseda University in Tokyo, and after graduation, Murakami operated a jazz bar called the “Peter Cat” in Tokyo for eight years.
Murakami did not write at all until after age 30. He claims that he was inspired to write his first novel, Hear the Wind Sing (1979), while watching a baseball game. He then published Norwegian Wood (1987), which sold millions of copies in Japan and made Murakami a literary sensation. To escape the fame, he and his wife lived abroad for several years, in Europe and in the United States, where Murakami taught at Princeton University. They returned to Japan in 1995. In 2002, he published Kafka on the Shore, a novel John Updike called “a real page-turner, as well as an insistently metaphysical mind-bender.”
Haruki Murakami said: “I write weird stories. Myself, I’m a very realistic person. […] I wake up at six in the morning and go to bed at 10, jogging every day and swimming, eating healthy food. […] But when I write, I write weird.”
It’s the birthday of the novelist Jack London (books by this author), born in San Francisco (1876). London was mostly self-educated. He worked as an oyster man for a time. He also worked on a sealing schooner off the coast of Japan in 1893. He sailed to Alaska to join the Klondike Gold Rush, and when this did not make him rich, London turned to writing and began to seek publication for the stories he was always writing.
He is best known as the author of over fifty books, including The Call of the Wild (1903) and White Fang (1906). His best known short story is “To Build a Fire.”
It’s the birthday of Walter Mosley (books by this author), born in Los Angeles (1952). His father was black and his mother came from a family of Russian Jews. When he was growing up, Mosley loved to listen to the stories his relatives told on both sides of the family. His mother’s relatives talked about life in Russia, and his father’s relatives talked about life in the South.
After riots erupted in his neighborhood of Watts while he was still in high school, Mosley decided that he wanted to get as far away from Watts as he could. So he went to a small college in Vermont. He bounced around in a variety of jobs for a while, selling pottery and then working as a computer programmer. Then, in 1982, he read Alice Walker’s novel The Color Purple. He later said: “I’d read a lot of the French [novelists] — Camus and all that — and I love their writing. But I couldn’t write like that. Then, when I read Walker, I thought, ‘Oh, I could do this.'”
He began writing a novel about a character named Easy Rawlins, living in Los Angeles in the late 1940s, and the result was his book Devil in a Blue Dress (1990). It’s the story of a black World War II veteran who’s just been laid off from his job when a white man hires him to find a white woman who’s known to frequent the black community. It became a bestseller, and Mosley has written several more novels featuring Easy Rawlins. The latest is Charcoal Joe (2016).
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