Thursday, September 16, 2010

The continual production of ‘more excellent fiction … than anyone has time to read’ is the essence of the problem. That’s the torture of walking into a bookshop these days: it’s not that you think the books will all be terrible; it’s that you know they’ll all have a certain degree of competent workmanship, that most will have about three genuinely beautiful or interesting sentences and no really bad ones, that many will have at least one convincing, well-observed character, and that nearly all will be bound up in a story that you can’t bring yourself to care about. All that great writing, trapped in mediocre books! Who, indeed, has time to read them?

from Get a Real Degree, Elif Batuman

(via Rumpus, long-- but worth it.)


  1. Yes and yes. I buy poetry books, sometimes for a single poem. And I recently recycled a Nick Cave book called Bunny.... It was so awful I couldn't even send it to the thrift store. And by the way, your blog photo is fantastic!