Tuesday, March 07, 2006

So I'm reading the Sunday Times on Tuesday...

...and I see there's a new film by Robert Towne, the writer of Chinatown, one of the best movies ever made so shut the fuck up. The new movie is Ask The Dust and it's based on a novel by John Fante, a guy who wrote Dago Red, a book of short stories that knocked me on my ass in my 20's. I hadn't known about his novels, but in those days I was reading all over the place, whatever fell into my hands, and the thought of actually writing novels hadn't really registered yet as I was extremely slow and barely capable of undressing myself without the aid of a young woman.

I checked out a few things and found out Bukowski was a big fan. Who knew? (Yeah, probably all of you. Like I said, I'm slow) so I thought I had to post this confluence of great writing, a typewriter, and Bukowski. How could I not?

Here is an excerpt from Bukowski's introduction:

"...one day I pulled a book down and opened it, and there it was. I stood for a moment, reading. Then like a man who had found gold in the city dump, I carried the book to a table. The lines rolled easily across the page, there was a flow. Each line had its own energy and was followed by another like it. The very substance of each line gave the page a form, a feeling of something carved into it. And here, at last, was a man who was not afraid of emotion. The humour and the pain were intermixed with a superb simplicity. The beginning of that book was a wild and enormous miracle to me. I had a library card. I checked the book out, took it to my room, climbed into my bed and read it, and I knew long before I had finished that here was a man who had evolved a distinct way of writing. The book was Ask the Dust and the author was John Fante. He was to be a lifetime influence on my writing."

Now I have to go find a copy of this novel and that kick-ass collection of short stories.


secretdeadartist said...

He was one of the better and most underappreciated authors of his generation. You could certainly do worse in choosing something to read.

Writeprocrastinator said...

I'm almost done with "Women" by Charles Bukowsi. In it, a teacher and a student ask him who his favorite author is and he replies, "John Fante."

They ask him what does he like about Fante and he replies, "total emotion. A very brave man."

Ray said...

Fante kicks all arse. But the movie will be absolute rubbish, according to the trailer putting it across as a romantic drama where every single emotion is telegraphed.