When I first began thinking about creating my own weblog, I thought I wanted to add another "literary weblog" to those so usefully surveyed by the Literary Saloon, the best of which include, in my reading, the Bookslut blog, Maud Newton, Golden Rule Jones, and the Saloon itself. But I eventually concluded I did not want just to provide yet more links to the daily literary news, perhaps with my own biting comments. Instead, I would like to test the proposition that the internet, in the form of the so-called "blogosphere," can provide a forum for a new kind of literary criticism, more compacted and concise, perhaps, than conventional print lit/crit, but serious criticism nonetheless.
Literary criticism is greatly in need of revitalization, as mainstream publications confine their coverage mostly to gossip and the book business, their book reviews becoming more and more perfunctory when not being eliminated altogether, while the academy, once entrusted with the job of engaging with works of literature, has mostly abandoned it altogether in favor of "cultural studies" and other forms of political posturing. I would hope, in fact, that this blog could work as a kind of bridge between the blogs and other general interest literary publications and what was once called "literary study"--which in my mind is simply the willingness to take works of literature seriously.
I would like, then, to provide consideration not just of individual works of fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, etc. but also important developments in the literary world more generally, issues being debated in the literary press, as well issues related to the craft of writing. I will do so on a regular if not always daily basis, the idea being not to keep abreast of the literary version of breaking news but to pause and consider these broader issues, as well as the overall direction being taken in today's literary world.
Those looking for the latest and newest in the morning's papers might thus be disappointed with this blog. I hope, however, that I can substitute for the breadth of coverage found in the other literary weblogs (which I myself read almost every day) a little more in the way of critical depth, although I also hope readers find my comments to be lively as well as engaged.