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Memories of my melancholy film course:

I’m not entirely sure what Manhattan is doing on VisionTV, home of both televangelists and Murder, She Wrote. I do know, however, that the first film released to home video in letterbox (so as to preserve the original Panavision aspect ratio) is still beautiful, still well-written, still unnervingly observant. Say what you want about Woody Allen — and there’s a…

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Books, given and received:

During the holidays, I promised myself that I would write about the books I gave at the end of 2008. They ranged from manga to cookbooks to hard sf to satire. I had no idea I’d get to brag so much about the books I got, too. (Spook Country needs its own post, because it’s just painfully good. It’s rare…

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Project: Rooftop

Sometimes I stumble upon links which make me absurdly happy. Case in point: Project: Rooftop, which unites both pro and fan artists around the huge drawing board that is the history of superhero costume design. My favourite so far is the tribute to Stephanie Brown, AKA Spoiler, AKA Robin. Stephanie got a raw deal from Detective Comics, which they have…

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Pimp: "Jobnik!"

         Jobnik! is an autobiographical graphic novel by my friend Miriam Libicki. It’s about Miriam’s time as an American girl in the Israeli army. Here’s the summary: Miriam Libicki, an American-Jewish girl from a religious home, enlists in the Israeli army (IDF) in the summer of 2000, against everyone’s better judgement. Many qualities seem to make her unsuited…

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On the short story

The short story apologizes for nothing. It exults in its shortness. It wants to be shorter still. It wants to be a single word. If it could find that word, if it could utter that syllable, the entire universe would blaze up out of it with a roar. That is the outrageous ambition of the short story, that is its…

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Inspiration

These are the three most inspiring things I’ve read all week, the things that made me sit back and actually think about them, rather than simply digesting and moving on. I showed these things to other people, thought about them at the gym, which is always a sign that a piece has stuck with me. Most artists are brought to…

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