Saturday, October 18, 2008

Annie Proulx: No Longer at Home on the Range

So much of Proulx's hard, fine writing is about place it's a wonder more people don't try to find her. After winning the 1994 Pulitzer Prize for her novel "The Shipping News," set in Newfoundland, Proulx became a fixed star in the literary constellation, winning almost every prize a writer could win.

She has often criticized the literary establishment for knowing nothing about what goes on in America outside its cities. She hates and generally refuses interviews (especially in her home). But she has agreed to talk -- although a polite e-mail from her publicist warns that she "takes a while to warm up to people." Her ferocity is literary legend, often cushioned by the phrase "doesn't suffer fools."

I saw Annie Proulx in New York City a few years ago, walking near St. Patrick's Cathedral. She suffered this fool long enough to say Hello.

I am a big fan of her writing.


Blogger The Weaver of Grass said...

I enjoyed The Shipping News tremendously - haven't seen the film as I feel the film often spoils the book for me (e.g. Moby Dick) - I like to imagine the characters for myself not have them thrust in my face. She is an interesting writer . I have been to Newfoundland/Cape Breton/ Prince Rupert and round there - there is such a lot of open space and such a parochial feel to it. I think this came over in the novel.

11:49 AM  
Blogger Suzanne said...

Me too.

12:06 PM  
Blogger jeneva said...

She's one of the few fiction writers whom I read. I'm in catch up mode, though, with all of the Wyoming Stories and their sequels.

8:15 PM  
Blogger david dodd lee said...

I do like the earlier Harrison
books a bit better--Farmer,
A Good Day to Die, Legands of the
Fall. His style wasn't so casual then. Yet I do admire the ease
and rather unpretentious new style.
It works. He was edgy as a young writer. Now his books feel as if
they earn their casualness via
a well-earned appenticeship
with life, a sort of wisdom
of just witnessing without the overload of drama . . . To date,
I've read all the books, including
The English Major. It's always worth it.

11:16 AM  

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