Friday reads: Foxlowe and The Girls

I discovered Foxlowe by Eleanor Wasserberg and The Girls by Emma Cline because both were short-listed for the Shirley Jackson Awards this year (which is one of my favorite award lists–always something good to read on that shortlist). I read them back to back and was struck by how similar, and different, they were from each other.

Both are about young girls involved in a cult, narrated from the point of view of an older woman looking back on her younger self. But each novel takes this premise in a different and interesting direction. Foxlowe is set on the English moors, in a crumbling mansion; it is gothic and creepy. The Girls is set in sunny California during the summer of love–the cult in question is rather obviously based on the Manson family. In Foxlowe, the cult leader is a charismatic but abusive woman; in The Girls, it is a charismatic but manipulative man. Both books tackle themes of abuse and identity, but through very different lenses. And both were engrossing reads.

For all the writers out there… Links!

Classic story structures and what they can teach us about novel plotting.

Infographic: The key book publishing paths.

How writer’s workshops can be hostile, by Pulitzer Prize winner Viet Thanh Nguyen.

From Chuck Wendig, a “hot steaming sack of business advice” for writers.

John Scalzi explains the concept of the “brain eater,” a danger lurking for writers and other creative types.

I ATE THREE EGGS EVERY SINGLE MORNING FOR A WEEK – HERE’S WHAT HAPPENED – Every Day Should Be Saturday

This is great. Trust me.
I ATE THREE EGGS EVERY SINGLE MORNING FOR A WEEK – HERE’S WHAT HAPPENED – Every Day Should Be Saturday

Kirk Drift

Did you know what “Kirk drift” was? I didn’t either until I read this strangely fascinating essay.

There is no other way to put this: essentially everything about Popular Consciousness Kirk is bullshit.

Source: Strange Horizons – Freshly Remember’d: Kirk Drift By Erin Horáková

 

Hysteria, Witches, and The Wandering Uterus: A Brief History | Literary Hub

I teach “The Yellow Wallpaper” because I believe it can save people. That is one reason. There are more. I have taught Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s 1891 story for nearly two decades…

Source: Hysteria, Witches, and The Wandering Uterus: A Brief History | Literary Hub

Stephen King is always appropriate…

Stephen King is one of my favorite writers, so here’s a little thing he wrote about Donald Trump. Here’s the trailer for The Dark Towerbecause we need that now. And just for fun, here are pop songs reimagined as Stephen King book covers.

“They” can be singular now…

The tide has certainly turned on the singular they. Here are the updated Chicago Manual of Style and AP Stylebook guidelines.