Katrin's Newsletter #29: Got ants in my pants....
This brief missive is a way for me to make connections with people interested in art and creativity (sign up here). I'm an author and editor, always on the lookout for inspiration. Welcome to all the new subscribers!
Have you been reading? When all hell broke loose, I couldn't concentrate, and I'm so grateful that this tedious phase of extreme inattention has ended for me.
I needed a book like "Normal People," by Sally Rooney right now. She's in her 20s, the hottest new commodity in book publishing, raking in major awards and big sales. This novel has just been adapted into a 12-part Hulu series.
What made this novel so lovely and compelling for me is the tenderness with which Rooney shows the relationship between these two kids developing and then falling apart. It's easy to get cynical about our hook-up culture and fall into idealizing the way things used to be. This is a reminder of our capacity for empathy and love. And the tragedy of our constant inability to communicate! I'm still musing it all over many days later.
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Another novel that moved me is sort of at the opposite end of the spectrum, but explores its themes with similar tenderness and insight.
Rosalind Brackenbury is a Key West writer, originally from England, and her latest novel "Without Her" looks at friendship, aging and death. This may sound miserable, but I assure you it's not. It's a quiet novel, moving and thoughtful.
And if you're looking for something in the thriller vein, about a disturbed policewoman searching for her drug-addicted sister, try "Bright Long River" by Liz Moore. I'm delighted that she'll be teaching here in Key West this January.
I can't wait to hug a child again.
I can't wait to embrace my parents.
I can't wait to order a beer in a bar and have to raise my voice to be heard above the crowd.
I can't wait to go into a book store and touch every single damn book on the shelves.
I've been lucky to do a number of really fun virtual events for This Terrible Beauty on Zoom, YouTube and the LitHub podcast, First Draft. If you have time and want to check some of them out, click here (you'll also get to see me wearing my new "peepers"). Over 600 reviews so far, 4.4 out of 5. Finally something to smile about!
We've been watching some random old movies that have provided LOTS of great entertainment: Peyton Place (1957); Basic Instinct (1992); The Stranger (1946);
The Shining (1980); and my favorite of all: The Postman Always Rings Twice (1981)--this movie is NUTS! Here's the trailer.