Denis Johnson Archive

Lexicon Land

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Florida is in a constant state of post-apocalypse. Authors are not immune to this speculative affliction, and when they set their fantasies in Florida, the reinvention of language abounds.

Stories Strangely Told: Denis Johnson’s “Car Crash While Hitchhiking”

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When I was twenty and thought I had just about figured out what a story was, my fiction teacher walked me to the oven-sized scanner outside his office to copy onto legal paper the first twelve pages of Denis Johnson’s Jesus’ Son.

The Varying Feelings of Jesus’ Son

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Perhaps, in connecting the song’s teachings of drug struggles from the ’60s with those of the book and films of the ’90s, both similarities and differences across these platforms can provide intake on why the opioid epidemic either comes in waves, or never truly leaves.

Round-Up: Denis Johnson, Short Edition, and Khizr Khan

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From the death of author Denis Johnson to a short story-dispensing machine in Boston, here’s the latest literary news.

The Art of Dialogue for the Reticent

I write down bits of conversation I overhear in the train, in the park, at the checkout line, and borrow the more memorable ones for my own fiction writing. I am interested in the lines that sound strange or nonsensical, because they show a sense of character and intimacy

At Some Point The Writer Should Be Having Fun: An Interview With Arthur Bradford

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An incomplete list of the animals that appear in Arthur Bradford’s latest collection Turtleface and Beyond include a dead cat, a porcupine that menaces a recluse’s outhouse, a dog liberated from the pound, and the eponymous turtle, of face fame. Besides Turtleface, which came out in February, Bradford is the author

New (and Old) Stories (and Poems) from the Midwest

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 In a previous post I wrote about Midwestern literature and spent a lot of time defending the region against attack. But there certainly are folks who enjoy the flatland’s contributions to American letters. In fact, more than a few commented and tweeted about their favorites. To keep this conversation

The Books We Teach #4: Interview with Christine Schutt

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The Books We Teach series will feature primary, secondary, and post-secondary educators and their thoughts about literature in the face of an evolving classroom. Posts will highlight literary innovations in teaching, contemporary literature’s place in pedagogy, and the books that writers teach. In the spirit of educational dynamism, we