Sunday, April 16, 2006

From the Mercury News:

Within a few months, I had all the books in hand and had mapped my strategy. Along with each winning work, I would read at least one other book by the author and his or her biography, study criticism and view any film versions. This was going to be a gourmet reading experience.

Speed bump No. 2: Most of the first 10 Pulitzer Prize winners were abysmal. The jurors had lapsed into good taste only once, when they chose Edith Wharton's ``The Age of Innocence.''

Speed bump No. 3: Life and news intervened. On election night 2000, I sat in a St. Petersburg, Fla., hotel room perusing ``Scarlet Sister Mary'' and faced facts. After months of reading and research, I had made it only as far as 1929. The Bush-Gore drama unfolding on television was a whole lot more interesting. I flew back to online news work in Atlanta and put aside the project for 4 1/2 years.

. . . . .
Some books were impossible to read without the main character's metamorphosing into the actor in the movie role. In my mind's eye, Atticus Finch was indistinguishable from Gregory Peck, Newland Archer conjured up Jeremy Irons and Oprah Winfrey was Sethe. It was a reminder that we bring all our experiences to reading.

[Ed. question: When did Jeremy Irons play Newland Archer?]

No comments: