Friday, September 2, 2016

Happy Labor Day!

It turns out I have no Labor Day appropriate photos! 
I'm just about to leave town for a long (though not long enough) weekend, and because my head is still in the fictional realm of Fair Chance (oh, POOR Elliot...) I thought I would simply share a couple of my all-time favorite essays with no purpose in mind other than to share something I love--writers being witty on the subject of writing.

The first is by James Thurber and it's called "The MacBeth Murder Mystery". You can read it right here.

The second is Samuel Clemens (Mark Twain) on the topic of James "Fenimore Cooper's Literary Offenses," which you can read here.

Do you have any favorite witty essays on the subject of writing?

Wishing you all a happy weekend! Have fun and stay safe!


  1. Poor Elliot? No,no,no! The poor man has been through enough...GAH! ;-)

  2. I don't love DH Lawrence but I love his essay Why the Novel Matters because it's outrageous and true and beautifully written and I quote bits of it all the time. I love so many things about it. How he says writing gives you an instinct for life and that only life matters (better a live dog than a dead lion) and about how the novel is the 'one bright book of life'. I don't even agree with every word of it but it's wonderful.

    Can't wait to read your two.

  3. Sorry, Josh. No favorite or otherwise witty essays on the subject of writing. But...did want to leave a line to wish you and yours a lovely, though not long enough, weekend. Take care, and please have a kind thought for POOR Elliot while you are away. :)

  4. Hopefully Josh isn't torturing Elliot by killing Tucker, I thought gloomily, after reading this post.
    I liked Stephen King's On Writing and this interview is interesting;
    Enjoy your short free day

  5. New try:
    Enjoy your short free days!

  6. The "Macbeth Murder Mystery" is hilarious. Now I'll have to dig out to see if I can pick out the clues these two discussed.

    Have a wonderful Labor Day weekend Josh, relaxing with friends and loved ones. Judy S.

  7. I adore Dorothy Parker's book reviews.

    "Of course, I should like to read of my beloved subject only as it is treated by the best; but the best is not always or even often available, and so, like all aging lovers, I must settle for what is easiest to get. Therefore, I am a confirmed user of Whodunits. I make the admission without shame, let shrink from me who will. (Have I ever, by the way, told you about an elegant friend of mine who refers to the school as Whodidits? She is the same lady that speaks of Woolworth's as the five-and-ten-cent shop.)

    To me, the raveled sleeve of care is never more painlessly knitted up than in an evening alone in a chair snug yet copious, with a good light and an easily held little volume sloppily printed and bound in inexpensive paper. I do not ask much of it -- which is just as well, for that is all I get. It does not matter if I guess the killer, and if I happen to discover, along around page 208, that I have read the work before, I attribute the fact not to the less than arresting powers of the author, but to my own lazy memory. I like best to have one book in my hand, and a stack of others on the floor beside me, so as to know the supply of poppy and mandragora will not run out before the small hours. In all reverence I say Heaven bless the Whodunit, the soothing balm on the wound, the cooling hand on the brow, the opiate of the people."

    --Book review Of Ellery Queen: The New York Murders. Esquire January 1959, "They Done It: Murder as Treated by the Best" from Esquire, January 1959”

  8. Hope you had a lovely long weekend and thank you for the essays! Looking forward to reading them! :-) p.s. and doubly virtual hugs to Elliot as it sounds he needs them ;-)