This is my one-hundredth post.
It seemed like an occasion to be marked, celebrated with a post more noteworthy than a marginally funny story about a bizarre concert I went to recently or more thanks to all of you who continue to visit in spite of my irregular posting and wildly variable post quality.
I spent a lot of time trawling the internets for ideas for a hundredth post, which of course, obviously, led to much comparing my blog to other people’s blogs and a lot of writerly insecurity and general paralysis that this post had to be better. It’s also dark November, and I’ve been reading Housekeeping again, which, well, it’s not always good for me: it’s so full of loneliness and loss and it’s so, so beautiful. It just sometimes leaves me feeling without, too full of feels to feel. (I think I can safely say that’s a phrase Marilynne Robinson would never dream of writing.)
But if anything productive came out of all that blog comparison, I realized I haven’t given you much grounding information on who I am, and my reading tastes (favorite authors and so on). After all, why should you come to my little book blog at all, if not to find out about books you might be interested in reading yourself, general bookishness, and the occasional somewhat funny story about things that have happened to me? If authenticity is something to strive for, and I believe it is, then maybe now is the time to remedy that.
I tried to do just that with the following, in one hundred words or less, but it’s closer to two hundred (they all seemed necessary):
I love books that make me laugh, books that make me cry, books that keep me up reading in the night, and books that make me think. My ideal dinner party of authors, living or dead, would first of all involve enough of them so that I wouldn’t be expected to contribute heavily to the conversation, and would at least include: Harper Lee, C. S. Lewis, Jane Austen, Barbara Pym, Marilynne Robinson, Lady Mary Stewart, Dorothy L. Sayers, and Shakespeare. In my mind, Harper Lee and Barbara Pym would immediately corner Jane Austen like the fangirls they were; Dorothy L. Sayers, C. S. Lewis, and Marilynne Robinson would enjoy some intellectual conversation about Christianity; and after I’d effusively told Lady Mary Stewart how I’ve read This Rough Magic almost to shreds and can quote from it at length (it’s the one book I own whose broken spine is caused by me), she would find Shakespeare endlessly interesting. As would we all.
I would be happiest floating between their conversations, refilling plates and glasses and basking in the general glow of greatness.
What about you? Who is invited to your ideal dinner party of authors?
Congratulations on writing up 100 posts!
Hmm, my ideal party invites would be Roald Dahl, Phillip K. Dick, Neil Gaiman, Jane Austen of course, Shakespeare (so we can find out who the real guy was!) J.K.Rowling, Capote, Dickens, James Joyce to see what he’s like, and I could go on for a while naming authors just so I could have them in an intimate setting and see what kind of people they were. Good question!
I totally agree with you on Shakespeare!! We’d solve the literary mystery once and for all!
The literary dinner party question is a tough one. Would I want the authors of my favorite books, or the authors who I think would be the most entertaining/interesting at the dinner table? Definitely Austen, because she would be smart and engaging. Dickens, so he could talk about his walks through London and do some voice-acting, if things get a bit dull. That’s all I have off the top of my head, but I’m sure I could think of a couple other interesting characters to add to the mix.
That’s an interesting approach to the question! I assume, because I so enjoyed spending time in the works of their imaginations, that I’d want my favorite authors, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they were good conversationalists… :)
Exactly — some of them were just not nice. Hemingway might be fun but he’d drink too much and become volatile…
I came over and read this post a few days ago. Congratulations on the big 100! The more I thought about the author dinner party, the more intimidating it became. Reading is such an intimate endeavor. These people have become inhabitants of my soul via their work. As an introvert of the first order, think I’ll just maintain the status quo. And as somebody said, real people are wild cards.