There is great debate about which texts deserve to sit in the canon of literature – debates shaped by people far more informed than I. Sure, I’ll talk about canon in Marvel or Doctor Who or Star Wars but F. Scott Fitzgerald and Ernest Hemingway? Agatha Christie and Arthur Conan Doyle? Et cetera and so on? I’ve opinions but few are fully informed by academic scholarship. Last summer I was reading one of my favorite blogs – I read that in a book – and I came across a post titled, “Personal book canon – a self-portrait in books.” I loved the post and I loved the idea and I immediately began thinking of what would make up my own personal literary canon. In the comment section of the piece, I talked of how I was eager to “steal” the idea and try it myself. This was something I could speak to in an informed way! I thought it a really fun idea, too, to look at the books which have most shaped my life. So today, in my 400th post (!!!!), I’m going to do just that :D.
I wasn’t planning on writing today. It’s my birthday after all! Why go out of my way to make work for myself on my birthday? But then an idea for a post struck and, when a new idea is unfolding, writing isn’t work. It’s fun! So with that in mind, you know I love Doctor Who. And I thought, what with it being my birthday and all, it might be kind of fun to reflect a little on what leads me to love certain characters or fictional worlds. Out of all the stories – novels, comics, movies, or TV shows – I’ve consumed in my life, what makes one stay with me? What makes me want to return to that world and visit those characters again and again and again? What captures my heart and mind? Continue reading
The term ended last week and with it came the close of the second round of our Star Wars & Contemporary Mythology course. As Hannah and I were making our way through grading some of our students’ work, I had a revelation. Something similar happened last year, as our students’ final papers helped us finally make peace with The Force Awakens. I’m not sure if this epiphany-while-grading thing will become a tradition with our Star Wars class, but it’s happened to me again. This time it came while reading several Star Wars Playlist assignments – focused on Han Solo – and it led me to clearly see something quite personal about my experience of Star Wars. Continue reading
with Kalie Zamierowski!
[Michael’s Note: Well, the school year’s ended and summer vacation has finally arrived (yay!!!). I’ll be kicking it off with a week-long mission trip to Baltimore with twenty of our upcoming seniors. Obviously that means no new material on the blog for a week. I know we’re all sad about that BUT I’m leaving you with something EPIC. Kalie and I have finished our second original short story genre-mashup. This time we’ve dropped Deadpool into A Nightmare On Elm Street. I think we may’ve topped the first one too. Personally, writing this was SO MUCH FUN. Enjoy!] Continue reading
with Kalie Zamierowski!
[Michael’s Note: Who’s ready for some…ORIGINAL FICTION?!? That’s right ladies and gentlemen, today marks an exciting new chapter in my little blog’s life. Kalie and I have co-authored a short story/piece of fan fiction/genre mashup…whatever you want to call it. It’s an idea we’ve been playing with for months and finally just wrote it! Playing to what we love, we’ve taken the Stephen King classic The Shining and dropped the Ghostbusters into the Overlook Hotel. We had A LOT of fun and can’t wait to do this again. While she’ll disagree, about 95% of the credit for pulling this off goes to Kalie. She’s the gifted writer, capturing everything so eloquently. I have no idea how she does it. I helped with the plot, dialogue, and characterization but she did all the heavy lifting :). We’re really proud of it and hope you enjoy it too!] Continue reading