“I’m so bored. I hate my life.” - Britney Spears

Das Langweilige ist interessant geworden, weil das Interessante angefangen hat langweilig zu werden. – Thomas Mann

"Never for money/always for love" - The Talking Heads

Sunday, November 18, 2007

advertisement for myself

I don’t usually advertise my journalism stuff on this blog. But today I will. I started my new column on academic books in the Austin Statesman today. Check it out. The deal is that I will, as the spirit moves the editors at the paper, be doing these roundups of two university press books now and then. The column debuts with a close look at Gregory Clark’s A Farewell to Alms (which, I must say, I deal with mighty handily – my five pages of objections to the book boiled down to a pretty succinct seven paragraph takedown) and James Simpson’s Burning to Read. In the future, I’m going to try to chose books for each column that are a little more related – although making these books rub elbows was fun.

So tell your Ma, tell your Pa, and tell the person you know who works for a university press or who wants to publish some academic book. I think this column might be a first for a regular newspaper. And if it goes well, I’ll become the godfather of the academic publishing world. Those on my right hand I will elevate to their thrones in heaven, those on my left hand I will damn eternally. Or something like that. My friend Dave has often remarked that it is a lucky thing for the world that I never gained either wealth or power, since I have a cruel and dictatorial soul – wrapped in the body of a beggar. True enough.

7 comments:

Scruggs said...

Good stuff, Roger. The review of A Farwell to Alms was restrained and to the point. Your concluding paragraph in the Simpson review got the message across without belaboring it.

I wish the critics had been as thoughtful when my “The School of Hard Knocks: Variables Relating to Krazy Kat Partner Choice Differentiated by Throw Weight” was published. You were the only one to give it its due.

roger said...

Mr. Scruggs, they missed a treasure! I have used your advice on the "Ignatz method to sacred and binding Christian love" ever since.

roger said...

ps - oh, the perils of journalism for the philosophically minded! I was just preening about my column, when I happened to read the headline they wrote for it - Opposing theories hurt book's premises - when, of course, it should read -opposing premises hurt book's theory.
But I'm not gonna bitch. Still, it is a little funny.

roger said...

Scott McLemee, who does a column for inside education, was sweet enough to mention my debut.
This pleases me a lot.

tom said...

If they have any sense they'll run your column often enough that regular readers will discover the difference between thought and media.

roger said...

ps - they have an interview with me (they have thoughtfully given me a new first name, Richard) over at Inside Higher Education about the column.

Scott McLemee said...

You will be Roger again. This I swear.