Tuesday, June 2, 2009

More Work Books Needed?

This was an interesting article about writers and work, though as with most things in the Boston Globe, I don't totally agree with the premise about a dearth of literary work themes.  Alain d' Botton misses the beauty of Joshua Ferris's And Then We Came to The End.  He writes, "When a new writer like Joshua Ferris does finally devote a novel to tracking the antics inside a corporation the critical reaction is peculiar and telling: He attracts renown and praise for his courage in telling the fresh and entirely unexpected subject matter of going to the office."   I think in truth Ferris attracts renown and praise for writing an original novel brilliantly. Or maybe d'Botton is merely drumming up business and doing the good work of promoting a new book. Whatever the case, I did like the photo with the article, so I borrowed it.  

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Ed Park published a good office book last year as well called Personal Days.

Also, Poets and Writers had an article called "Editors Publishing Editors: The Truth About Literary Nepotism" that seems worth discussing on here.

Anonymous said...

But he did notice Ferris, WR. At the end of the fourth paragraph he says, "When a new writer like Joshua Ferris does finally devote a novel to tracking the antics inside a corporation, the critical reaction is peculiar and telling: he attracts renown and praise for his courage in tackling the fresh and entirely unexpected subject matter of going to the office."

Writer, Rejected said...

Oops, missed that. Read to quickly. Thanks for the correction. I will correct it. I still disagree. The reason Ferris got attention is that it was a really well written, well conceived, funny novel.

Anonymous said...

Agreed, he definitely puts a spin on it.

It's a good, but definitely awkward article due to his self promotion.

Anonymous said...

You have excellent taste in images.

rmellis said...

Yeah, there are actually a lot of novels about working, though they aren't always about being an office worker. I just read "The Twin," which is very much about being a solitary Dutch farmer. Stewart O'Nan's "Last Night at the Lobster" is about working at the Red Lobster.

As a person who has put in my time as an office temp, I really, really prefer reading non-office novels -- I can't bear the flash-backs.