Monday, May 26, 2008

Alana Noel Voth Has Great Taste in Fiction!

Well, she does! Just look at her list of stories that lingered, so many of which are on my "can't get 'em out of my mind" list:

Michael Cunningham's "White Angel"

James Joyce's "Araby"

Tim O'Brien's "The Things They Carried"

Maxine Hong Kingston's "No Name Woman"

Susan Minot's "Lust"

Raymond Carver's "Fat"

To my delight and disbelief, two of my stories made the list as well, "Blinded" and "Ukiyo" (both of which would also make my list of my own favorite stories, interestingly enough).

Making Alana's list is especially meaningful because she writes seriously excellent literary erotica. Her work is emotionally complex, often heart-wrenching, and amazingly insightful about the erotic impulse. "Attempt to Rise" in The Mammoth Book of Best New Erotica 7 has an artful blend of playfulness and pain that would make any writer envious. "Waif" in I is for Indecent gives "indecency" a new meaning, but you won't understand the full impact of that until the punch-to-the-gut ending (especially for a parent).

You know, I can be a real whiner about the publishing biz and the lack of respect for erotica in our sex-phobic world, but Alana's list, which includes some other wonderfully talented writers like Martha Garvey and Jeremy Edwards, makes me remember what a vibrant and supportive community we have here in our little corner of the literary world. There's no place else I'd rather be!

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