College textbooks have been really stupidly expensive for decades, but in the past 10 years, those already crazy prices have gone up by 82%. Two senators, Al Franken and Dick Durbin have heard your bitching and they want to do something about it.
In 1971, Hayao Miyazaki started preproduction on an animated full length Pippi Longstocking film, but sadly, he was was never able to secure permission from Astrid Lindgren. Oh, this would have been so fucking perfect.
Need a little light evening reading? Three previously unpublished short stories by JD Salinger, “The Ocean Full of Bowling Balls”, “Paula” and “Birthday Boy” have recently found their way online as a single PDF. Read ‘em and enjoy ‘em before some crumby bastards take them offline.
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.
Almost 30 years ago, Bill Watterson changed the world forever when he introduced Calvin and Hobbes. The artwork is beautiful, the humor smart and the writing brilliant in its three panel simplicity. And now Calvin and Hobbes collections are available as ebooks. It’s not the same as laying on the carpet with a giant well-worn Calvin and Hobbes volume until well into the night, but it’s nice you can now also have them in digital form if you needs a pick me up or a pinch of wisdom anywhere. This is just one book, but it encompasses three previously released books: The Essential Calvin and Hobbes, The Authoritative Calvin and Hobbes, and The Indispensable Calvin and Hobbes, each of which was previously released as a regular book.
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.”
Can you write a 50,000 word novel within a 30 day time span? Need I say more? How about a link for those who do not know what National Novel Writing Month is all about?
Can you crank something like that out in a month? If you do, let’s read what you’ve got come December.
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.