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Tag Archives: H.P. Lovecraft

I’m rereading Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises today, and I blame Woody Allen. Actually, I blame Corey Stoll and his incredible performance as Ernest Hemingway in Allen’s latest film, which won the Oscar for Best Original Screenplay. Stoll’s performance was only one of the many constant bright points in the film, but it was this moment that really won me over. I knew then that I was going to have to return to one of my favorite books of all time. It’s quite the change of pace from the other story that I’ve been reading lately, and it’s always good to return to familiar territory.

When I was in college, I read Hemingway for the first time. I had read his work before, when I was in high school, but that was before I truly read Hemingway. Now I feel as though I am reading some of my favorite works for the first time, and so it is that The Sun Also Rises has made its way back into my hands. It feels right to be reading classic literature. I’m not trying to be a book snob or anything, because I’ll read pretty much anything and give any author a chance at least once, but it’s good to come back to perennial favorites. There is something almost indescribable about Hemingway’s storytelling that pulls you in. If you haven’t read it yet, I highly recommend you do so. He’s really not that intimidating of an author. Personally, I feel that he’s the easiest of the Lost Generation to really understand.

On the other side of the reading coin, there is the Lovecraft collection that I’ve been borrowing from a friend. Now, I own a copy of the Necronomicon, quite possibly the most thorough (and best titled) collection of H.P. Lovecraft’s work ever published, but it’s sadly hidden away in a storage unit for now. Despite the presence of perhaps only a third of the more well-known titles that exist within the pages of the Necronomicon, this collection does a phenomenal job of presenting some of the best work (albeit the shorter pieces) that he ever wrote, including “The Call of Cthulhu” and “The Shadow Over Innsmouth” within its pages. I read the former story while on an airplane over the Pacific Ocean, and I think that the only better way to experience it would be to read it on a ship in the Atlantic. You can’t beat reading a story where it takes place. This reminds me, I’m working on a piece at the moment that is set in a building not unlike my hometown library, with a few creative twists. I’ve never been in a building that is more suited for a horror story. I’m drawing on influences of Poe, Lovecraft, and King, masters of the genre, and injecting just a little bit of truth. We’ll see how it turns out.


I hit the ground running this morning, if getting out of bed at 10 AM can really count as a running start. You see, this is going to be a big week. After missing two days of work because of an amazing snow storm (and actually being snowed in for the first time in YEARS), I finally got things moving again. It seems that my repeated attempts to get a slight boost in hours at work have been noticed, and I’m getting a new schedule with more hours (okay, one more per week), and it’s enough to get me partial benefits and a work week that’s not completely insane.

Not pictured: the 45 minutes it took to dig her out.

Now that the weather has cleared up, though, and the creativity is going. And going strong. Maybe I’m just fueled by the Irish Car Bomb cake that I made the other day, but I woke up this morning after dreaming of Lovecraftian things. This means that I’ve now hit upon my next idea for a novel. Yes, the first one is still a work in progress, with around 32,000 words at present, but it’s not often that I’ve come up with ideas for something that I feel could be more than just a short story. In fact, if memory serves, this makes, well…two. So this is big. I’ve never had that feeling of “HOLY SHIT I HAVE TO GET OUT OF BED AND WRITE THIS ALL DOWN RIGHT NOW!” until this morning. It was glorious. Cue me running down the stairs, grabbing a Java Monster from the fridge, and hurling myself onto the couch to scribble out two full pages of random notes, details, and actual bits of dialogue that came out of something reminiscent of Rose Red meets Call of Cthulhu. Yeah. No more details at present. I’ve got characters to come up with soon.

So yeah, off to a good start, like I said. Jot down some notes, chug some coffee, eat some candy for breakfast, and jump on twitter to find this. That’s three major book retailers refusing flat-out to sell books published via amazon, which has been attempting to cut the middle man out of publishing in addition to book sales. This boycott started with independent booksellers, so bravo to those little guys who were brave enough to stand up to amazon in the first place. The online retailer seems to be in some danger now anyway, mostly due to rapid over-expansion. I’m intrigued to see how this plays out. Now, I’ve had it pointed out that some writers who had published through amazon would now be in trouble, but, well, “you dance with the devil…” I’m just glad that I didn’t go that route. I’m determined to stick by traditional publishing, despite the fact that it’s a long, difficult road. Maybe this whole situation just goes to prove that the easier path isn’t necessarily the best.

Anyway, I’ve got a couple of tasks to accomplish about the house today, and then I’ll delve back into the madness that is building in the back of my mind. Cheers!

Somehow I missed out on the fact that they’d been developing a Lovecraft musical. To make up for this, I’ve been listening to the score. This is the first track on youtube, and it’s absolutely brilliant. I suppose it’s even better for people who are Lovecraft fans already, but it’s still pretty enjoyable for the general public, provided that you’ve seen A Fiddler on the Roof, the original play that this one parodies. I don’t care if they’ve only ever had a handful of successful productions of this show, I want to see it. Hell, if I had the money, I’d produce it. Much like Spamalot, this is one severely underrated musical that needs better exposure.

Lovecraft needs more exposure, frankly. I mean, kids today know Edgar Allan Poe from their high school English classes, if not from earlier. They see Stephen King (of whom I am a huge fan: 11/22/63 is on hold for me at the library, and I absolutely cannot wait for Dr. Sleep and The Wind Through the Keyhole) or Dean Koontz or the others on the shelves at bookstores, and many of them don’t realize that there was someone (or some thing…) filling in those years between Poe and today. Lovecraft’s fiction is deep, disturbing, and profound, and I can’t read enough of it. Just as entertaining are things like Neil Gaiman’s short, “I, Cthulhu.” Check it out on Tor’s website, here. I just wish that I’d had a formal introduction to Lovecraft the way I was introduced to classic literature. Some things just go unappreciated for far too long. Maybe, if ever I slip off of the pier and lose what’s left of my sanity (to the Dark Lord Cthulhu or otherwise) and become a teacher, I’ll try to sneak something like “The Color Out of Space” into my curriculum. Or maybe I’ll just avoid teaching. It could be dangerous and hazardous to young, impressionable minds. Damn kids might actually learn something, and we certainly can’t have any of that.

There’s all kinds of great things to read out there, and there are great people making things happen for people to help them get access to the things that they’re needing or wanting to read, whether it’s a copy of Lovecraft’s Necronomicon collection or the latest political biographies. The people of the Occupy Wall Street Library are those kind of people, and they need your help. Check out their wordpress page and see what you, as a writer or a reader or a lover of books or of democracy or of protests can do to help them out. Send them your donations, your books, your poetry, or even just a letter saying “Hey, OWS Library, we totally appreciate that you’re trying your best to help make this whole shitty situation a little less shitty by providing books and whatnot to all the people here.” Maybe you can send them a spare Lovecraft collection. In his house in Wall Street, dread Cthulhu waits dreaming of equality and fairness and an end to the bullshit that is politics. Right? We can only hope, and hang on, like a shoggoth on the roof.