On the Road - 50th Anniversary

The 50th anniversary of Jack Kerouac's On the Road is September 5. (I hope to attend a reading at Vesuvio's, one of the old Beat hangouts in San Francisco.)

Here's an interesting article from the UK Guardian. (And an amazingly unimpressive one from the New York Times.) {Note: Here's another -- better -- article from NYT.)

According to the Guardian, Kerouac's image has been prostituted by "a range of Jack Kerouac clothing launched in America." Ugh.

On a more positive note, Viking Penguin has published On the Road: The Original Scroll, the full, uncensored text.

This looks cool, too. Check out Kerouac's postcards...


Outmoded authors (not me, not yet)

I've joined the Outmoded Authors blogspot, set up by the wonderful Imani.

This is exciting!

In July, I did a similar challenge, trying to read Neglected Authors (those who are excellent and should be read but for some reason do not have wide readership).

Outmoded Authors, as described on the blogspot, gives "some needed attention to authors who have fallen by the way side."

The main difference between the two categories, as I see it, is that Neglected Authors may not ever have had wide readership, for whatever reasons, while Outmoded Authors once were prominent or popular and have somehow lost readership. In July, I managed only to read Nathanael West, who turned out to be a classic example of Neglected Authorship. (I vow this weekend to finish my post on Miss Lonelyhearts.)

Imani has compiled quite an impressive list; if you are looking for new authors, this will work as a wonderful reference.

As for me, my challenge will be to finish Olivia Manning's Balkan Trilogy, a big fat copy of which has long languished on my bookshelf.

This, combined with the upcoming RIP Challenge, should keep me kneecap-deep in lively reading 'til year-end.