[Editor's Note: Robert Sullivan will be reading at Powell's City of Books on Burnside on Sunday, March 22, at 7:30 p.m.
This is my last day guest blogging on the Powell's Books blog, and I'd like to thank everyone involved for making this a great guest blogging week for me, including, obviously, the staff at the Powell's blog, as well as the staff of the Thoreau You Don't Know blog, which is not as big (or cool) as the staff at the Powell's blog, for sure. Picture me, at this moment at the end of a guest blogging week. Picture me as being like a guest host on Saturday Night Live, after the musical artist has played a second time, at the point in the show where, if you are as old as the staff of The Thoreau You Don't Know, you are thinking, What am I doing still up at this hour? You know how sometimes the guest was kind of OK, maybe even a little lame, and you are more interested in seeing the cast members of the show, and how they look out of character, in the relaxed moments before the close? Well, that's kind of how this last guest blog post is, in my blogging imagination: I am surrounded by cool Powell's blog people, looking a little lame, but happy to be surrounded by cool Powell's blog people — and wondering where the after party is, of course.
To review the guest blogging week, I like to think I had some decent links, mentioned some great books, and kept brief my notes on my whereabouts and doings on a given day (the exception being on Saint Patrick's Day when I went to the White House and probably typed too much about it).
Before I go, I'd like to just throw some more links out there and mention a few more books that I am thinking about at the moment. Here is the weather in my neighborhood, which is where I would like to be instead of where I am, which is Palm Springs, California — I don't play golf and I melt in the sun, and everyone here senses I feel out of place. Here is a Thoreau readings site where I have spent too much time. Here is Stevie Wonder on Sesame Street, playing "Superstition" — this, if I may be so bold as to stretch out my writer powers (such as they are) in all their descriptive glory, is sooooooo good. (I mean this is crazy good.) Here's a Q&A with my friend Matthew Sharpe, with the Qer asking him for As about his novel Jamestown. Here are Library of Congress photos on Flicker.
Sailing on to Portland. Photo via Library of Congress on Flicker.
Books I am thinking about include: The Troubles by JG Farrell; The South by Colm Toíbín; Beckett's Letters; and A Month in the Country by J L Carr. I'd also like to mention, in closing, that when I began writing this Thoreau book, I bought a complete edition of Thoreau's journals at Powell's, while I was in Portland writing about an incredible film called I'm Not There and rereading a great novel by Oregon native Jon Raymond, The Half-Life. I also bought a ton of Thoreau books on that trip, including one of my favorites, by Robert Bly, the great Minnesota poet: The Winged Life.
Magazine pieces I am reading include the New York Review of Books piece about E. M. Forster by Zadie Smith, which is really blowing me away and which I would be finished with if I weren't on the road.
There — blogged. Now, I must get back on the road to make it to Powell's to read in person to person, if any come by. So thank you. Thanks you for reading, and thank you for reading this, if you have made it this far, and if you have, then you know who you are, naturally. Thank you again to the Powells blog staff. I really only have one question as the credits roll and we go to a commercial. It concerns a writerly goal of mine, as well as a personal and emotional goal. Am I on the Burnside marquee? If not, then I will keep writing. That's reason enough. That and it being fun, writing, kind of like the Thoreau You Don't Know, who was, believe it or not, a joker.