Bourbon Cowboy

The adventures of an urbane bar-hopping transplant to New York.

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Location: New York, New York, United States

I'm a storyteller in the New York area who is a regular on NPR's "This American Life" and at shows around the city. Moved to New York in 2006 and am working on selling a memoir of my years as a greeting card writer, and (as a personal, noncommercial obsession) a nonfiction book called "How to Love God Without Being a Jerk." My agent is Adam Chromy at Artists and Artisans. If you came here after hearing about my book on "This American Life" and Googling my name, the "How to Love God" book itself isn't in print yet, and may not even see print in its current form (I'm focusing on humorous memoir), but here's a sample I've posted in case you're curious anyway: Sample How To Love God Introduction, Pt. 1 of 3. Or just look through the archives for September 18, 2007.) The book you should be expecting is the greeting card book, about which more information is pending. Keep checking back!

Friday, January 19, 2007

A Meme Revisited

A little while back I uncovered a meme where you take a book at random and print out the fifth sentence on page 123. I don't know why, but it's been an obsession with me ever since---a quick way of hopefully summarizing an entire book with a perfectly typical sentence. This is, of course, a scattershot diversion, and it seems to work best with the more brilliant writers who sort of foreground their style. I've spent an undue amount of time this evening flipping through my book collection, and for some reason I felt like sharing the following nicely typical sentences:

Vladimir Nabokov, Lolita:

“Oh, I’ve been such a disgusting girl,” she went on, shaking her hair, removing with slow fingers a velvet hair ribbon.

William Gaddis, JR:

—We’re not seeing these women wrestling these eels?

Paul Beatty, The White Boy Shuffle:

Boys and girls floated across the floor superglued at the crotch, grinding each other’s privates into powder in a mortar-and-pestle figure-eight motion.

Stanley Elkin, The Living End:

“Call on someone else,” Christ said.

James Morrow, Towing Jehovah:

“But if I had to point a finger, which is not my style, but if I had to point, all I could say is, ‘Your people killed God once before, so maybe they did it this time too.’”

James Joyce, Finnegans Wake:

Yet on holding the verso against a lit rush this new book of Morses responded most remarkably to the silent query of our world’s oldest light and its recto let out the piquant fact that it was pierced butnot punctured (in the university sense of the term) by numerous stabs and foliated gashes made by a pronged instrument.

Donald Barthelme, The King:

“Myself, I dream of cheese.”



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