2018 in Review

Here’s a look back at my writing and thinking life over the past year. After publishing Burning Down George Orwell’s House in 2015 (and paperback and French editions in 2016) and then Bit by Bit in 2017, it was a relatively quiet year for me.

Short Fiction
“Readymade” appeared in Conjunctions 70
(Excerpt from my novel in progress.)

Author Interviews
Kate Christensen for Los Angles Review of Books blog
Tayari Jones for Tin House
Daniel Torday for The Rumpus
Laura van den Berg for The Paris Review Daily

Book Reviews
Feast Days by Ian MacKenzie for the New York Times Book Review
The Fall of Gondolin by J.R.R. Tolkien for the Washington Post. This review was also translated and published in France.
The Frolic of the Beasts by Yukio Mishima for the Washington Post 

My Favorite Books of 2018
It was a strange year of reading for me. When I’m writing a novel, I tend to read very little contemporary fiction. Instead, I spend more time with poetry and nonfiction. In this case, I’m reading a great deal of folklore. I’ve also gone recently to some old favorites—in this case, The Brothers Karamazov and The Tiger’s Wife, the Sea of Fertility tetralogy and The Golden Bough, The White Goddess and The Pine Barrens. I’m sure I’m forgetting a ton of books I loved this year, but here are a few I adored:

Fiction
Where the Dead Sit Talking by Brandon Hobson (Soho)
The Overstory by Richard Powers (Norton)
Ambiguity Machines by Vandana Singh (Small Beer Press)
The Odyssey by Homer as translated by Emily Wilson (Norton)

Poetry
Museum of the Americas by J. Michael Martinez (Penguin)
On Haiku by Hiroaki Sato (New Directions)
Trickster Feminism by Ann Waldman (Viking)

Nonfiction
Dungeons & Dragons Art & Arcana: A Visual History (Ten Speed Press)
How To Write An Autobiographical Novel
by Alexander Chee (Mariner)
Conversations on Writing by Ursula K. Le Guin (Tin House)
A Good Comb by Muriel Spark (New Directions)

Favorite Records of 2018
Black Belt Eagle Scout “Mother of My Children”
Huffamoose “…And That’s When the Golfball Hit Me In the Head”
Nightmares on Wax “Shape the Future”
This is the Kit “Moonshine Freeze”