All posts filed under: Fiction

July wrap-up

July reading wrap-up: Julian Barnes’s 2011 Man Booker prize-winning novel The Sense of an Ending Julian Barnes’s Levels of Life “The Dead” in James Joyce’s ‘Dubliners‘ Patti Smith’s memoir Just Kids Read a bunch of long-form New Yorker stories published in the two issues that I received (July 10 & 17, 2017 Issue & July 3, 2017 Issue). Always a late delivery, unfortunately! But always an interesting read! I think the Hemingway story is my favorite. The New Yorker article titles: My Dentist’s Murder Trial Hemingway, the Sensualist Nick Kyrgios, the Reluctant Rising Star of Tennis America’s Future Is Texas July writing wrap-up: Submitted a short story to H G Wells Short Story Competition 2017 on July 12. Paid the entry fee and an additional absolutely outrageous international payment bank processing fee. Got no reply from the competition organizers. (https://hgwellscompetition.com/) Submitted a short story to HISSAC Annual Open Short Story Competition on July 26. Paid an entry-fee and an affordable online credit cards transaction fee with PayPal. Received an immediate reply email from the organizer once my online payment was made. (http://www.hissac.co.uk/CompetitionDetails) Here’s the reply email that I received …

7 Short Story Competitions for 2017

2017 HG Wells Short Story Competition Deadline: Sunday 16 July 2017 The length is 1,500 to 5,000 words The Seán Ó Faoláin Short Story Competition Deadline: 31st July 2017. 3,000 words or fewer. The Writer Contest: Let There Be Light Deadline: August 21st, 2017 Word count: 2,000 words or less The Willesden Herald New Short Stories Competition 2017 Deadline: August 31st, 2017 The word limit this year is 7,500. 2017 The Short Story Competition Word limit: 1,000-5,000 Deadline: September 15th, 2017 Earlyworks Press Short Story Competition Stories up to 4000 words Deadline: 31st October 2017 The Fish Short Story Prize Word Limit: 5,000 words Deadline: 30 November 2017

Irish Writer William Trevor’s posthumous short story appears in the New Yorker magazine

“The Piano Teacher’s Pupil” by William Trevor from the June 26, 2017 issue of The New Yorker I’m very excited about the latest issue that I received this morning. The cover looks interesting and the Fiction section has a short story by an Irish writer William Trevor whose name I recognize. Regarding William Trevor’s latest New Yorker short story “The Piano Teacher’s Pupil”, the New Yorker fiction editors’ comment on Twitter: “It’s one of a few unpublished stories he left on his desk. Perhaps he wanted to go back to it; no one knows. It felt complete to us!” I first heard about William Trevor and a number of other notable Irish short story writers because of an annual short story competition the Seán Ó Faoláin International Short Story Competition 2017 which I recently discovered on the internet. Sadly Irish novelist and short story writer William Trevor died in November at the age of 88. By the way, the short story writing competition looks interesting. All you have to do is write a short story in the English language of 3,000 …

Best Quotes by Julian Barnes

Julian Patrick Barnes (born 19 January 1946) is an English writer. Barnes won the Man Booker Prize for his book The Sense of an Ending (2011), and three of his earlier books had been shortlisted for the Booker Prize: Flaubert’s Parrot (1984), England, England (1998), and Arthur & George (2005). He has also written crime fiction under the pseudonym Dan Kavanagh. In addition to novels, Barnes has published collections of essays and short stories. Here are a few great quotes from Julian Barnes’s publications. When you read a great book, you don’t escape from life, you plunge deeper into it. There may be a superficial escape – into different countries, mores, speech patterns – but what you are essentially doing is furthering your understanding of life’s subtleties, paradoxes, joys, pains and truths. Reading and life are not separate but symbiotic. JULIAN BARNES, A Life with Books Reading is a majority skill but a minority art. Yet nothing can replace the exact, complicated, subtle communion between absent author and entranced, present reader. JULIAN BARNES, A Life with …

2017 Summer Reading List

I admire those authors, editors and journalists who manage to do their work while reading a phenomenal number of books, about and beyond their latest project. I secretly hope that I can trick myself to read at half that speed. This year I aim to step outside of my comfort zone with these six picks. Here is a list of fiction and nonfiction books that I am planning to read this summer: Levels of Life by Julian Barnes Catch-22 by Joseph Heller Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov The Man Without a Shadow: A Novel by Joyce Carol Oates American Gods by Neil Gaiman Just Kids by Patti Smith   The book that I’m currently reading is Man Booker Prize winner Julian Barnes’s new book “Levels of Life,” published in 2013. It is a small collection of essay, fiction and heartbreaking memoir. The first section, “The Sin of Height,” is a historical essay that revolves around the “aerostatic photographs” of Paris taken in 1858 by the French balloonist Nadar. I’m reading stories about 19th-century ballooning enthusiasts for the …

Of Bicycles and War: A Review of Wu Ming-yi’s ‘The Stolen Bicycle’

The latest novel by the award-winning Taiwanese author interlaces devastating events with a touch of tenderness This article was first published online by Thinking Taiwan 想想論壇 (http://thinking-taiwan.com) on December 1, 2015. Wu Ming-yi’s (吳明益) fifth novel《單車失竊記》(The Stolen Bicycle) pays tribute to the millions of soldiers who died during World War II and the countless animals and natural habitats that were destroyed in the cataclysm. Written in traditional Chinese, the novel follows the protagonist as he sets off on a search for his father’s stolen bicycle, a popular Made-in-Taiwan Happiness Brand bicycle (the brand used the slogan “Get on a Happiness, Bike Your Way to Happiness” (騎幸福牌腳踏車,踏上幸福之路). The unnamed middle-age male protagonist, a writer like Wu himself, whose father is a skilled tailor at the Chung Hwa Market, receives a letter from a reader asking what happens to the father’s bicycle left at Taipei Zhongshan Hall in his last novel,《睡眠的航線》(Route in a Dream). The letter immediately grips the protagonist’s heart and he embarks on a journey of discovery, tracing back the history of the Happiness bicycles …

Reading F. Scott Fitzgerald’s Stories with Sandee Woodside

This month I signed up an interesting small tutor-led class, “The Great Gatsby and New York,” on a new Taipei English course shopping website called MDT. It was the most interesting classes on the list, and it was the only class that was about F. Scott Fitzgerald’s works. I’m a big fan of F. Scott Fitzgerald and so my thoughts are completely biased. When I saw the course description, I liked it immediately and was excited about the class. I wonder what it might be like to chat about Fitzgerald’s stories with real people in real life. “The Great Gatsby and New York” class that I attended was held every Wednesday night in the month of June (3 lessons in total) after work from 7:30pm to 9pm in a small meeting room inside an old office building nearby Guting MRT station in Taipei city. The location was great for all of us and was close to National Taiwan University and National Taiwan Normal University. The class was led by Ms. Sandee Woodside, a thirty year old writer, poet, and teacher from New …