One of the most quotable moments from the highly quotable 1971 film ‘Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory’ is when Wonka introduces the children to one of his new inventions— lickable wallpaper. As the kids lick the wall, Wonka exclaims “the snozzberries taste like snozzberries!” What are snozzberries? You probably thought it was just some total nonsense term from an author, Roald Dahl, known for lots of nonsense words. But in Dahl’s world, the word “snozzberry” does apparently have a meaning. In Dahl’s 1979 adult novel ‘My Uncle Oswald’, “snozzberry” is slang for penis. Yes, those kids were licking dick flavored wallpaper. Not surprising for a story whose main character is a lonely psychopath living in his own fantasy world who casually murders children for kicks.
In 1848, by then a nationally celebrated poet, Edgar Allan Poe published ”Eureka,” a 150-page prose poem on the nature and origin of the universe. The work, an overheated grab bag of metaphysics and cosmology, was a flop. A reviewer for Literary World likened it to ”arrant fudge.” A hundred years later T. S. Eliot summed up the critical consensus. ”Eureka,” he wrote, ”makes no deep impression … because we are aware of Poe’s lack of qualification in philosophy, theology or natural science.”
The New York Public Library teamed up with the University of Maryland’s Institute for Technology in the Humanities to digitize Shelley’s two surviving notebooks containing most of the work—complete with edits by Percy Bysshe Shelley, her poet husband. Making this almost 200-year-old text click-accessible for a modern audience is only the first step for the Shelley-Godwin Archive, which hopes to digitize the entire oeuvre of the ultra-writerly family of Percy, Mary, and her parents, William Godwin and Mary Wollstonecraft.
Good lord knows Oscar Wilde wasn’t shy about his love of the male form, but according to some evidence, it seems pretty likely that in 1882, Wilde and fellow writer and beard to end all beards owner Walt Whitman bumped nasties. So now you know that.
Meet Pius Johnson, the self proclaimed “Stephen Hawking of Fiction” with a book that makes American Psycho look like Peter Pan
Pius Johnson calls himself “The world’s first special needs author” and the “Stephen Hawking of fiction”, which is perhaps fitting for someone named Pius. His first novel, titled ‘Pious’ is a semi-autobiographical, very dark and very violent tale about a young man who escapes from a special needs hospital.
Yesterday, author Tom Clancy, sometimes called the master of the modern military thriller, died at the age of 66. Clancy wrote dozens and dozens of novels that spanned many decades and many different types of military thriller as the United States emerged from the Cold War into the modern war on terrorism. Clancy was first propelled to stardom when his 1984 novel ‘The Hunt for Red October’ was made into a feature film in 1990. Since then, Clancy has sold millions of books and has even had his Rainbow Six series turned into a popular video game franchise.
A couple days ago, author George RR Martin joined the legion of breathless Breaking Bad fans in heaping praise on the last season of the series. Martin, author of the Song of Ice and Fire trilogy that spawned Game of Thrones, is such a big fan, the series has inspired him to create an even more evil villain for Westeros, because as he said on his blog, “Walter White is a bigger monster than anyone in Westeros… I need to do something about that.”
For a one-man show in California called ‘Citizen Twain’, Val Kilmer is playing America’s writer, but to get the exact look of Mark Twain, it took a whole lot of prosthetics, in a process that Kilmer tweeted step by step.