Saturday, May 26, 2007

This Writer's Life

While I intended this site to basically be about writing and writers, I allowed it to become basically a place to post my own book reviews. But since I've not been writing them as quickly as I'd hoped, I've decided to modify the site back to its original mission.

That means I'll be posting items about writing, about writers, about writers talking about writing, book reviews, well written scripts ... You name it.

Also, I've added a blogroll on the side. These are writing-related sites I've found interesting. One is the blog of a guy who used to write for me (no, it's not Christopher Moore, though I used to write for a guy by the same name. Go figure.) And I'll be happy to add new links for other visitors if you give the address (got that Tom?). If a few people actually start to visit, I'd love to start discussion strings on writing.

So, writers of all stripes -- poets, novelists, journalists, short storyists (is that a term?), screen writers, Wikipedians -- and readers galore are all invited and encouraged to check out what the Elephant has to offer.

If I may add a different subject: I've embarked on a new project; I'm researching John Paul Jones for a museum exhibition. While I've already started to read some of the major biographies and background works on the father of the American navy, I'd be happy to hear what others might suggest about source material.

I'm also in the midst of a freelance piece on refugees. So far, it's about one event in particular following the fall of Saigon, but I envision this developing into a broader project of stories from people who've left their homeland to find a new beginning in the United States. Anyone with suggested materials, I'd love to hear frmo you.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007


I was spinning around the Internet looking for information about how to avoid scummy, sleazy literary agents, when I found this page. It's an old post (in the archives). But I found it helpful.

It's about a letter from a self-published reader who sends a note to an editor in response to something on the editor's blog. There's a funny little aside that made me laugh:

Jim Frenkel was once approached at a convention by an attractive young lady, who said, approximately:

“Golly, Mr. Frenkel, I’d do anything to be a published author.”


“Then write me a good book.”


Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Help Wanted: Book Reviewers

There was an excellent article in today's New York Times about the demise of book reviews in newspapers. It pointed to the emergence of some great literary blogs like and the Elegant Variation as well as sites like the Emerging Writers' Network, where Dan Wickett has been putting together reams of electronic reviews and encouraging other writers to do the same.

Which brings me to my point. Though I've been reading voraciously, I'm not always able to digest them all into a nutritious review. So, I'm inviting others to submit reviews to me, which I'll look at -- probably edit a bit if the writing is particularly messy (hey, that's my job) -- and post. You can say you were published on the Elephant's Bookshelf! It's not much, and I can't offer any money at this point, but it's out there if you'd like to take advantage of it.

If you're interested, contact me at