Monday, September 08, 2008

Back to the twin pursuits of columns and literary journalism

CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY, Sacramento, Sacramento, CA USA - With two heavy duty writing classes on my schedule this semester - Literary Journalism and Column Writing - it would seem that I should get inspired to get back to my own writing.


Moving into a new house, after flying 2,500 miles to get here, took most of the writing starch out of me with this missive being the first writing since leaving Valois, New York more than a week ago.

Que lastima.

But these two classes (and two basic news writing courses) almost always provide a kind of weird kinetic vibration that gets me writing again after short respites.

In Literary Journalism, we will be reading the works of Sebastian Junger, Hunter S. Thompson, Jon Krakauer and a half dozen others. The students will also be producing a draft of a major piece of Literary Journalism, after a semester of research.

Hunter S. Thompson, R.I.P
Hunter S. Thompson

In column writing, students will be producing two 650-word columns per week - an admittedly heavy load - except that the work is, well, the work of writing and by the end of the semester they should be, for the most part, facil writers who can bang out a column.

And me? I'll be reading a lot of student work, but also getting back to work on my fiction (Soundtrack, a novel that has been in progress for five years) and beginning a work of literary journalism about immigration. I say beginning because my best sources are in Mexico, a few houses from where I will be living this winter and spring.

And, time permitting, I'll be back using this column to talk about making money with writing.

Time permitting.

Brass clock