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Thaisa Frank's Blog

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Feb.10.2011
I'm going to the city of angels again this Sunday to read from Heidegger's Glasses at Rhapsodomancy.* As always, my challenge is: How to make a fragment from a novel alive to readers--alive enough so they feel like active participants rather than passive observers? When I was reading from short...
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Jan.28.2011
David Gutowski (largeheartedboy on Twitter) asks writers to write about the music they listened to while writing particular books. Heidegger's Glasses took almost three years to write and it was challenging to remember that time in detail.  I thought that music hadn't been a part of that novel...
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Jan.10.2011
   Reading of Heidegger's Glasses.  I hope there will be a lively discussion about the power of group minds, the novelistic aspect of WWII and "Heidegger" question.  And--if there's time--the role of the fairy tale in modern life. There will be wine and cheese afterwards.  ...
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Jan.09.2011
Last year my agent took me to a meeting about the e-book at the BEA.  For every pro that an expert spoke there was a con by another expert.  The difficulty of keeping things ready to print. Problems with copyright, distribution, hidden costs.  The conclusion: not enough is known.   I left with so...
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Jan.07.2011
Skibell, McCarthy and Lagerkvist have written very different books.  All of them, though, are driven by a strong and believable voice of a first-person narrator--a voice that contains the essential conflict and tension of the story. More details at http://beatrice.com/wordpress/2011/01/07/thaisa-...
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Jan.07.2011
The Scribes are coming to New York with me. Or am I going with them?  In a sense I feel that whoever I was and whatever I felt during three years of writing have disappeared inside a book. At some point the story took over and my job was to finish it. And then I finished it and the story stood on...
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Dec.12.2010
Invitation-Book Party
The Scribes have returned from the Hammer reading and are happy to go back to Los Angeles this Tuesday. They liked the surprising summer, the palm trees, the sun at 5 o'clock winter angles--but stil shining. They were enhralled by the tawdriness of cafes in Venice and the...
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Dec.06.2010
Hammer-1.jpg
There's something paradoxical about the process that happens after a book comes out.  Writing is a private, isolated, often lonely profession.  No one knows that a passage was punctuated by two trips to the refrigerator, that one section flowed, that another was rewritten five times and resulted in...
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Nov.15.2010
The Sleepers (pictured in the blog below a HUGE empty space) is a picture that long reminded me of Heidegger's Glasses.  But only a perceptive question by Audra at  http://unabridged-expression.blogspot.com/2010/11/interview-with-thaisa-... got me to think about the picture. I'd never been able...
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Nov.10.2010
 Imagination and History: Heidegger's Glasses                    Over twenty years ago, when I’d written just one collection of short stories, I heard a woman’s voice from deep below the earth. She lived in Germany during World War II and was helping people answer letters to the dead. I knew her...
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Nov.03.2010
As an inveterate short story writer, this is the first time I've read from a novel and I have no idea what to read without giving too much away, since nearly every scene answers a question that was asked earlier.  It's a warm day and the carefully-planned outfit I created will be too hot. I haven't...
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Nov.02.2010
In Tibetan Buddhism there is a fish-release ceremeony in which practictioners throw fish that have been caught--still alive,  destined for markets--back into the water.  Carp and sole, momentarily stunned, dip down into the water, fill their gills and swim away. When a  novel is  launched it always...
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Oct.15.2010
I am a very temporary expatriate in Guanajuato--by choice--I have to see this city (and others) for my next novel. The Festival of Cervantes has started, but I am tucked away in the hills and  go to town for the sort of experiences that only writers and artists and filmmakers regard as adventures....
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Sep.23.2010
My forthcoming novel has gotten me to look at my origins in the eternal conundrum of imagination and identity. I  found this column from over twelve years ago, written for the Chronicle as a guest-editor for Jon Carroll.  My origins--the strange bi-cultural nature of them--have always been hard to...
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Aug.31.2010
I'm always interested in the question: How do you know when a story is finished?   My answer is that I usually know when a story is finished on a very visceral kinesthetic level--like seeing a toy train stop on the tracks because it's reached its destination.  But people know in different ways.  ...
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