Infirm delight or stale moonlight?


Gert’s reading has given her a few ideas for new books. What do you think? Which one should we start first?

Inspired by Emily Dickinson:

Tell all the truth but tell it slant: a no-holds-barred exposé of the sleazy world of political spin doctors.

Infirm delight: a touching geriatric romance.

From Wallace Stevens:

Stale moonlight: another romance, this time a weary tale of the gradual loss of love in a marriage between two very fat people.

From Kenzo’s Essays in Idleness:

Strange and unusual details: a tattooist goes to extraordinary lengths

In the godless month: a bacchanalian romp set in a convent

And from Aleksandar Hemon:

Heartrending losses and unlikely victories: a novel of Tolstoyan proportions in which all the characters are ants.


What do you think has the greatest potential to take the literary world by storm?





32 thoughts on “Infirm delight or stale moonlight?

    1. Perhaps we could piggyback on The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. But ours will be an erudite and improving work of high moral seriousness.
      Pillow Book – I’m off to check it out.

          1. No way. I have a Wedding celebration to prepare for on Friday. The Wedding has taken place already. Have you ever made a wedding cake?

            1. I wouldn’t be so unkind to a bride. Are you baking the cake or decorating it? Both are well beyond me.
              And will you be doing some interpretive dancing as well?

  1. I favor the ants, but don’t know that it would take the world by storm. Perhaps if this is cli-fi — a new genre that I heard about at today’s residency seminar. It sounds pornographic, but in fact refers to climate fiction. In this version, climate changes have left the surface, and a few feet up, of the earth habitable. Through a combination of biological engineering and robotics, humans have morphed into something resembling ants and moved into underground colonies. When they are above ground, they must contend not only with the typical ant enemies (e.g., ant lions, aardvarks, and the like), but the effects of the climate change. Meanwhile, they work feverishly in their underground channels to reverse the effects of the climate change, bring back a few glaciers, and generally return to lost
    paradise of disco clubs, Neiman-Marcus, freeways, and micro-breweries with amazing pub food.

    I can also see working in the tattoo-ist and the convent as subplots.

    Thanks, Gert!

    1. We were thinking of something more classically Tolstoyan, but we’ll have to give cli-fi more thought. In my French group we read a book called Les Fourmis by Bernard Weber that contained more information about ants than you could ever want. They spent most of their time fighting and as it was hard to tell which ants were on which side it was hard to be passionate about the outcome of the battle. A bit more attention to discos and gastro pubs was just what it needed.

      1. I looked up “Les Fourmis” — sounds as if it is somewhat scientifically based. My recollection of other writings about ants (e.g., Jean Henri Fabre, “Book of Insects,” suggests that they probably don’t spend as much time fighting among each other, but that doesn’t make as good a story as it sounds as if Bernard Weber is telling. Looking forward to reading whichever book you settle on!

  2. My vote goes to the Tolstoyan ants too. Now I’m imagining Paul Dano, Gillian Anderson et al (from the recent BBC adaptation) as giant insects…

    1. Yes, Gillian Anderson has what it takes to be an impressive ant. I could also nominate Jeremy Irons and David Walliams. Dudley Moore too. Vanessa Redgrave. But not so fast, as they say in the Georgette Heyer books – we haven’t actually written it yet…

  3. I’d go for a mash-up of all the themes: the geriatric romance contrasted with gradual loss of love in a marriage between two very fat people, both interwoven with a strand featuring spin doctors and tattooists embroiled in the bacchanalian romp set in a convent. The Tolstoy ants could provide the counterpoint to the human tale, illustrating the ridiculousness of human excess and folly …
    I read it.

  4. Strange and Unusual details: a tattooist goes to extraordinary lengths—-

    just may get a whole lot of attention but perhaps not commercial success because everywhere I go the majority of folks have a tattoo now or have read the Steig Larsson books and will open the book based on the hope of another kick butt female character with ink…


    In the godless month: a bacchanalian romp set in a convent just may be the one.

    because Nuns and Convents 2016 has such potential for a great story-line.

    Emily Dickenson may not fly because since Coursera and Ed X and online education classes, have made true and connected followers of so many globally who never read Emily seriously and now think of her daily. We just might unite, expect editing rights to anything offered, and write unflattering reviews if we do not feel their opinions and contributions are respected and acknowledged. That voice just may keep some from reading what could hold real promise.

    Loved this post. I had fun in responding. You are having too much fun. Thank you for sharing. 🐞

    1. Hmm. Thanks for your deep consideration of this topic. The spectre of a worldwide Dickinson class action against us is alarming, but then they do say all publicity is good publicity. Nuns and convents did have a fly some decades ago but perhaps the time is right for it again. In the past we’ve have had the idea of having a hero who was really an archangel. Perhaps we could bring him in.

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