Paula Bomer is the author of Baby and Other Stories (Word Riot Press, December 2010) and the co-publisher at Artistically Declined Press, where she also serves as the supervising editor at Sententia, a Literary Journal. Find out more about her and her work at www.paulabomer.com.
what are you reading now
I'm reading The Easy Way to Stop Smoking by Allen Carr.
classic you’ve been meaning to read
Middlemarch by George Eliot and Moby Dick by Herman Melville
last book you finished in a single sitting
He is Talking to the Fat Lady, a chapbook by xTx . Prior to that, I was reading the excellent Bad Marie by Marcy Dermansky. I didn't read it in one sitting, but I read it quite quickly.
book you borrowed and never returned
I can't remember - this may have happened when I was younger. I no longer borrow books, although I give away, rather than lend, many books. I will say the last book someone didn't return to me that I really cared about was a signed copy of a first edition of White Jazz by James Ellroy. I'm still mad at the man who didn't return it. This happened 15 years ago.
favorite book from childhood
Hmm. So many! I think Pickles the Firecat meant so much to me. I was a cat fanatic (still am) and he was so misunderstood because he was in the wrong place. And when he found the right place to be, and the right thing to do - be a firecat - he became happy. It made me think that I too could find the right place to be and do, and that I too could stop being so misunderstood. When my oldest boy was little, I tried reading him The Giving Tree and I started to weep so badly I couldn't finish reading it. I'm never picking that one up again. I think I'd die from grief.
strangest dream involving a book, writer, or literary character
Hm. Nothing is coming to me. Sorry. I do often have sexual dreams about professional tennis players that I've written about at my tennis blog, Must Watch Tennis All The Time.
book you’ve planted on a coffee table to impress someone
Again, I can't think of anything, really. I do try to hide some books from my religious cleaning lady, like Fuck You Too by Glen E. Friedman and Please Kill Me by Legs McNeil and Gillian McCain.
if you could subscribe to only one literary journal
The Paris Review. I guess. I buy lots and lots of journal. All sorts.
best thing you’ve read online recently
Roxane Gay's blog comes to mind. I love reading her blog and anything else by her. But there are so many good things online. The essay "The Love of My Life" by Cheryl Strayed is available online. It really really stays with you. It's unbelievable. I read Storyglossia, Night Train, Pank, Dogzplot. Some writers I discovered online are Elizabeth Ellen, Scott Wrobel, Kevin Wilson, T.J. Forrester, Barry Graham... anyway, I could go on here forever.
most anticipated upcoming release
PJ Harvey's new record. Also, at the small press I run with Ryan W. Bradley, we are releasing the novel You Can Make Him Like You by Ben Tanzer and Ayiti, a collection, by Roxane Gay. I'm super thrilled to be publishing these two books.
recommended reading list:
Books with Suicide and/or Mental Breakdowns
- Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
- The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
- Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert
- The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
- The Heart of the Matter by Graham Greene
- Darkness Visible by William Styron
- The Awakening by Kate Chopin
- Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf
- Last Things by Jenny Offill
- The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton
- A Sorrow Beyond Dreams by Peter Handke
- The Eden Express by Mark Vonnegut
- Disturbing the Peace by Richard Yates