2010-02-01

R.I.P., J.D.

Life as the Elgin Street Irregulars' designated literary coyote is not all free wine and cheese book launches, lemme tell ya.

Cards and letters began pouring in last week, politely pointing out that after the royal sendoff one gave to Erich Segal, it would be utterly churlish of one not to do the same for the late J.D. Salinger.

A more recent rash of polite missives has begun to pose the question: "Speaking of late, why the hell has one not stirred one's fuzzy butt and done so, already?

My bad.

But JD poses a unique quandary. His record. About mid-last century, he writes a clutch of short stories and novellas, and a vanishingly small number of novels, one brilliant, and one pretty damn good.

After which he bugs out to New Hampshire and turns recluse, not publishing another word for half a century, amid whispers that he's still writing reams of brilliant stuff for his own amusement only.

You can see the problem for pioneering metabloggers such as ourselves, even ones that have moved on from their original purpose. We have lived (and occasionally died) by the daily outpouring of committed bloggery. People who post more than regularly and who veer into the breathtakingly confessional at the mere drop of an innuendo. An innuendo often as not picked up, dusted off, undressed and punted center stage to swing around the pole, a bare sentence or two later.

JD? All that copy for 50 years, and we get nuthin'... The ESIs' unofficial position on his passing is that we think he would have made a lousy blogger. Make of this what you will.

9 comments:

XUP said...

"Lousy" is kind of a pejorative judgment, don't you think? JD might just have been of the Aggie/Woodsy School of Blogging which emphasizes quality over quanitity, frequency or verbiage.

coyote said...

Pejorative? Ummm, yeah, ma'am.

Our gig is holding other bloggers to a much higher standard than we set for ourselves. Having no standards for ourselves, of course, makes it much easier for all concerned...

Woodsy said...

XUP, I am flattered. Need I say more ...

Alex said...

the thing is, these authors are dropping like flies, regardless of their merit as authors:

PK Page and Robert B Parker in the same month? Is there no justice?

coyote said...

Parker's prose was gettin' a little deadly lately, wasn't it...?

Alex said...

i feel like i can't make fun of the guy now, though, because he died at his desk and frankly, there are worse ways to go... unless, of course, his prose outright killed him.

coyote said...

No reason death should be a Get Out Of Jail Free card when opportunities for wicked wordplay may yet remain!

I believe we must assume that his prose killed him. Absolutely. Unless, of course, hard evidence to the contrary is uncovered...

Merlin Durken said...

If prose killed Salinger I wonder what is going to finally get John Grisham... what fate are copy writers most likely to suffer?

coyote said...

For the people who write scripts for the talking heads on E Now, Entertainment Tonight and Hollywood Insider, I think exploding heads...