The Prosen People

groucho-marx-4The Jewish Book Council not only wrote a generous review of A Reunion of Ghosts, but they also invited me to be a Visiting Scribe on their The Prosen People site, which was an honor and pleasure. The charge was to write three essays having to do with Jewish or literary matters. Here’s what I came up with:

“I’m Telling Everyone”: Ruminations About Coming Out Jewish in Less-Than-Welcoming Environments. This essay includes reference to this song.

“Some Thoughts About Autobiographical Novels”: Two questions novelists are often asked are “Do you write by hand or on a computer?” and “Is your book autobiographical?” I write on a computer. The other question is answered in this essay.

“Bagels and Groucho”: Another question I’m often asked is why I think it’s okay for a novel about suicide–and chemical weapons and war and diaspora and AIDS and random gun violence and terminal illness–to contain humor. I try to answer that here. And I refer to the poem “Tattered Kadish” by Adrienne Rich.