Read Bukowski in a Sundress: Confessions from a Writing Life by Kim Addonizio Free Online
Book Title: Bukowski in a Sundress: Confessions from a Writing Life|
The author of the book: Kim Addonizio
City - Country: No data
Loaded: 1765 times
Reader ratings: 6.7
Edition: Penguin Books
Date of issue: June 23rd 2016
ISBN 13: 9780143128465
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 1.85 MB
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“I am deliriously happy, and I am hurting everyone.”
“I like to have a martini,
Two at the very most.
After three I'm under the table,
after four I'm under my host.”--Dorothy Parker
I was hoping for a more coherent memoir, but got this still honest and painful and moving and hilarious and exasperating collection of essays by the amazing poet Addonizio. Titles include “How to Succeed in Po Biz,” “How to Stop Drinking so Much,” “Pants on Fire,” “All Manner of Obscene Things,” and “How to be a Dirty, Dirty Whore.” I laughed aloud several times and shook my head in admiration for how well she can write. She writes mainly about sex and drinking and writing, but she also writes movingly about her dying mother, her passionate love for her daughter, and her consistent failures with men. It’s searingly honest, in essays such as “Pants on Fire” that notes all the lies and half-truths she has told in her poetry, such as:
“My heart is not a ‘Mississippi chicken shack.’” ☺
Addonizio tells lies to tell the truth.
Writing advice: “Know the difference between its and it's, between lay and lie: you lay the form rejection slip on the table: you lie on the bed filled with the anguish of self-doubt and feeling of utter worthlessness."
“It is crucial not to win the major award, because then you might feel too great a sense of achievement. Be a finalist, but not a winner. This will keep you forever unsure of the scope of your talent, and you will be able to continue the habits of excruciating self-doubt and misery
that stood you in such good stead during the many years you received no recognition at all. “
Apparently one critic derided Addonizio as “Bukowski in a Sundress” and it fits. So she owns it.
Addonizio is very clear about her writing “process” as including a lot of watching of movies and drinking and partying, self-loathing, drugs, boredom, guilt for sharing family secrets and sex with all manner of men and more drinking and rejection and sometimes success. She goes through a lot of suffering and makes it clear it is her own damned fault.
Addonizio drinks, tries to stop, describes the joys of drinking in soaring, completely convincing terms, and also convincingly the times when drinking has created bad decisions that have ruined her life. But she keeps writing amazing, sometimes confessional, poetry. And these essays, documenting it all, the good and the bad, in darkly funny tones.
The writing is great and hilarious and infuriating. It’s not usually deep; she goes usually for the joke, the light versus the deeply insightful. It is worth reading but read the poetry first. Tell Me, What is This Thing Called Love. Awesome. I will say about this collection that it is best read one essay at a time instead of powering through it, because there is a certain repetition to the themes that could get tiresome. They did just a bit for me. Not quite to the point of boring, but okay, already!
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Read information about the authorAuthor of several poetry collections including Tell Me, a National Book Award Finalist. My Black Angel is a book of blues poems with woodcuts by Charles D. Jones, from SFA Press. The Palace of Illusions is a story collection from Counterpoint/Soft Skull. A New & Selected, Wild Nights, is out in the UK from Bloodaxe Books.
2016 publications: Mortal Trash, new poems, from W.W. Norton, awarded the Paterson Poetry Prize. A memoir, Bukowski in a Sundress: Confessions from a Writing Life, from Penguin.
Two instructional books on writing poetry: The Poet's Companion (with Dorianne Laux), and Ordinary Genius: A Guide for the Poet Within.
First novel, Little Beauties, was published by Simon & Schuster and chosen as "Best Book of the Month" by Book of the Month Club. My Dreams Out in the Street, second novel, released by Simon & Schuster in 2007.
A new word/music CD, "My Black Angel, "is a collaboration with several musicians and contains all the poems in the book of that name. That and an earlier word/music CD with poet Susan Browne, "Swearing, Smoking, Drinking, & Kissing," available from cdbaby.com. There's an earlier book of stories, In the Box Called Pleasure (FC2); and the anthology Dorothy Parker's Elbow: Tattoos on Writers, Writers on Tattoos,, co-edited with Cheryl Dumesnil.
I teach poetry workshops at conferences and online through my web site. I also play blues harmonica, and I'm learning jazz flute. Music is a good place to focus when I'm in a writing slump.