Sunday, October 28, 2007


We went to see A.J. Jacobs read from and discuss his new book The Year of Living Biblically yesterday at Vroman's Bookstore in Pasadena. I've yet to read the book, but it's certainly an interesting premise. I really enjoyed The Know-It-All, his previous book, which chronicles the year in which he sets out read the Encyclopedia Britannica from A-Z. After I read it, I e-mailed him hoping (illogically) that he might have something for us. We went back and forth a few times, I sent him the lasted copy, he said some nice things, then said he just didn't have anything and was busy finishing up his novel and maybe ask again in the future.

What impresses me most about Jacobs is his willingness to commit to these projects. For the last year and half I've been working on my next collection of poems, tenatively titled, Dot-to-Dot, Oregon. I've traveled the whole state of Oregon (just about, sorry southeast corner), going to every city and town with a population over 3,000 or so. The goal is to have 50 or so poems that are centered in these places. So far about 20 are done, 25 are various stages of revision and 5 have yet to be written. And while I amassed a few thousand miles of my truck and spent about 3 weeks worth of time on numerous trips, day to day I usually spend about an hour working on the poems. This compared to Jacobs who not only spends the time to write the novel, but spends a year (at least for the last 2 novels) being the novel.

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