Monday, May 23, 2005

Jonathan Safran Foer is such a lit student, and his first novel, Everything is Illuminated is such a book that a lit student would write. That doesn't mean it is not good, it is quite excellent - but I need to read his second novel to see if he develops a unique voice. In EII, he writes Gabriel Garcia Marquez and Philip Roth filtered through the cutesy voice of Dave Eggers (specifically A Heartbreaking Work). Those are the three big voices that dominate his novel, writers he obviously likes and has imitated successfully. I like all three of those writers and so, of course, I really enjoyed EII.

I finished it last night because I drank too much coffee too late in the day and was anxious and thought about death. I finished it at about two and still could not sleep, still felt scared and anxious, so I started reading Chang-Rae Lee's Native Speaker, which I am not sure if I like. I have been on an American Jew reading kick forever, all those Roth books, and then Bellow, then Safran Foer, I needed to switch it up a little. Last night, I was not in love with Lee at all. The book tried to declare itself as a book about ethnic identity so early on and it drove me crazy. But this morning, reading it, I really liked it. Later this afternoon, the heavy handed concern with identity started to irk me again. I am going to try to finish it, though, just because I don't know who or what I am preparing myself for, but I have this idea that I need to have read all the big names in fiction, every single one of them. I don't know why, perhaps just to be able to talk to people about any book they are reading, or perhaps, it is an ego thing and want to be able to reference everyone and understand every reference. I don't know.

I am going to work at the Princeton Review this week, which is awesome, because it will give me money to pay my June rent. Working there for thirty five hours, not even forty, will give me five hundred dollars. I need to get a job and have a sizable income like that every single week. I am in the lowest pay tier at that organization also. I couldn't even imagine if I had a real job there (which I am applying for, btw, as a content editor), and I am terrified when I think of how much the IT people must make there, if they pay the people that feed scanners so much. However, my sleep schedule is going to be a little erratic this week. My schedule:

Wed 10pm-5am
Thurs 10pm-5am
Fri 3pm-10pm
Sat 8am-3pm
Sun 8am-3pm

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