Thursday, May 22, 2014

TCR Story of the Month for May: "At the Gravesite" by Martin Lindauer

Author Martin Lindauer
The Committee Room Story of the Month for May is the "At the Gravesite" by Martin Lindauer. In this deftly written short-short story, a seventy-year old man finally pays his first visit to his long-dead father's grave. Lindauer takes a light approach to heavy questions about fathers and sons, cultural identity and classic American upward mobility.

Martin Lindauer has published short fiction, essays, and memoirs in Glasschord Magazine, Long Story Short, New Vilna Review, Oracle, and other journals. A retired professor, he has published widely on psychology and the arts, including Aging, Creativity, and Art (2003); Psyche and the Literary Muses (2009); and The Expressiveness of Perceptual Experience: Physiognomy Reconsidered (2013). Lindauer is a native of Brooklyn, New York, and a graduate of the University of Illinois and The New School. He lives just outside San Francisco with his wife Bonnie and dog Archie.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

TCR Literary Journals Series: Newfound (An Interview with Newfound's Managing Editor Daniel Levis Keltner)

"The world doesn’t need another literary journal," says Daniel Levis Keltner, managing editor of Newfound. "This was my canned response to friends proposing to start journals. It takes a tremendous amount of work to accomplish the very basics—to publish hip, stirring, and quality work. So many already established journals out there need helping hands—why not pitch in? I’m no more original than anyone else. So, for me, to get into publishing meant the journal had to strive to achieve more."

Newfound is an online publication devoted to literary, visual, and artistic perspectives and interpretations of the physical world. Using fiction, essays, poetry, and visual art Newfound explores how place shapes identity, imagination, and understanding.

Daniel Levis Keltner, managing editor of Newfound.
A recent issue offers "Engagement," a short story by Darrin Doyle, in which a stable, middle-aged couple finds their lives unraveling when -- emboldened by drink and, perhaps more importantly, by the strangeness of being out very late at night -- they finally confront noisy neighbors.

Jaime Groetsema begins her review of a Chicago poetry reading by James Franco and Frank Bidart with a prelude about being interrupted by a fellow passenger while reading As I Lay Dying on a grimy city bus -- "He leaned over. He said what I was reading was his favorite book. His pleasure made me nervous...The man I thought I recognized was getting up. Was whispering in my ear. Was whispering and grinning: 'enjoy the book.' I couldn't read it anymore. The book was no longer mine."

Friday, May 2, 2014

Writing for Television: An Interview with Jennifer Keishin Armstrong, author of "Mary and Lou and Rhoda and Ted and All the Brilliant Minds Who Made The Mary Tyler Moore Show a Classic"

Some of the best comedy writing in the history of television was done for The Mary Tyler Moore Show. This classic American sitcom about a single woman in her thirties, the fictional Mary Richards, forging a life on her own as a Minneapolis television news producer, places at number six on the Writers Guild of America's list of 101 Best Written TV Series. TV Guide ranks The Mary Tyler Moore Show, which was a Saturday night fixture on CBS from 1970 to 1977, among the ten best TV series of all time.

In the recently published Mary and Lou and Rhoda and Ted: And all the Brilliant Minds Who Made The Mary Tyler Moore Show a Classic Jennifer Keishin Armstrong offers a fascinating and deeply researched account of how The Mary Tyler Moore Show was put together. The show's creators, James L. Brooks and Allan Burns, are at the center of events but Armstrong gives well-deserved attention to MTMS writers, especially Treva Silverman who wrote fifteen of the series' one-hundred sixty-eight episodes. The witty and insightful work of Silverman and other young women writers gave this series about a young woman an authenticity that was essential to its success.