March 4, 2003 11:32 PM   Subscribe

Author Michael Chabon makes a fair amount of his work available on the web. In addition to presenting pieces originally published elsewhere, he offers up a treatment for the original X-Men movie FOX asked him to write, a couple of television projects that never made the airwaves, as well as the usual I have a website and this is what I like . Something to read since so few Metafites own televisions...
posted by herc (12 comments total)
Would I have to have seen this movie called "X-Men" to appreciate this...? Heh.

Interesting treatment of the X-Men script...
posted by davidmsc at 6:21 AM on March 5, 2003

Chabon is a man who likes commas and a looooong sentence. I remember reading Kavalier & Clay and counting sentences of 60 words+ on almost every page. But hey, he likes comics. And the Pulitzer folks like him.
posted by Shane at 7:43 AM on March 5, 2003

Is this something you'd have to be literate to enjoy?

Thanks for the link: I liked K&K except it made me want to start collecting comics again. Or writing them. Would anyone be interested in a series comprised entirely of origin stories?
posted by yerfatma at 8:02 AM on March 5, 2003

I just finished K&C last week. Fantastic -- but sort of lost steam in the last 150pgs or so. I almost wonder if the end is intentionally drawn-out and boring. Sort of like the comic book world gives way to the real world of suburbia, jobs, mortgages, etc.

Some of his loooong sentences, though, are laugh-out-loud funny. Especially in the first half of the book.

Anyone read his other stuff? Reccos?
posted by Mid at 8:04 AM on March 5, 2003

Would anyone be interested in a series comprised entirely of origin stories?

Actually, I think there'd be a pretty strong audience for that. Call it "In the Beginning..." or something, get a really good artist, make the stories first person on occasion, and you've got a winner.
posted by me3dia at 8:23 AM on March 5, 2003

M Knight Shyamalan likes comic book origin stories. Oops--I guess the link wasn't Unbreakable.
posted by Shane at 8:33 AM on March 5, 2003

Mid: Definitely pick up Wonder Boys, but stay away from Mysteries of Pittsburgh (it's an earlier work, and I think Chabon was still looking for the right material to go with his distinct voice).
posted by turaho at 9:13 AM on March 5, 2003

I tried sooooo hard to read Summerland, because it sounded like a great premise, and I'm a huge fan of children's literature. I couldn't make it past the first chapter. Bummer.
posted by padraigin at 10:58 AM on March 5, 2003

I couldn't make it past the first chapter.
Shhh! I'm going to criticize a Pulitzer winner (again). I think Chabon's prose is often unwieldy and stilted (despite the opinions of people who think a huge sentence is impressive due to its size, complexity and large words). You don't have to look far in one of his monolithic paragraphs to find a misplaced (or at least unclear) modifier. You could remove 25% of the words in Kavalier and Clay and lose absolutely nothing but dead weight. If his prose were more accessible I think you and I might enjoy him much more.
[/cocky, amateur (but honest) opinion]
(heck, I never want a Pulitzer anyway...)

posted by Shane at 11:14 AM on March 5, 2003

Anyone read his other stuff? Reccos?
posted by Mid

An absolute second on the Wonder Boys recommendation. I also loved loved loved Kavalier and Clay, and I dig his flowery prose. Mysteries of Pittsburgh and Werewolves in their Youth were the product of a more amateur writer. Incidentally, the movie Wonder Boys does the book no justice. Chabon's one of my favorites, thanks herc!!!
posted by vito90 at 7:09 PM on March 5, 2003

vito -- thanks. I was thinking I was not going to read Wonder Boys because I have seen the movie already, which usually diminishes a book for me.

So what's the deal with all the gay themes in Chabon's books (at least K&C and Wonder Boys)? From the back-of-the-book bio and his website, it appears that Chabon is straight.

Not that a straight writer can't or shouldn't write about gay characters, but it does strike me as an odd recurring theme. I know writers write outside of their own experience all the time, but this strikes me as more than just creating a character who is a different race/gender/orientation than the writer. It's more like being a closeted gay man is a central theme of his work.
posted by Mid at 7:30 PM on March 5, 2003

Mid - no question. That is something I've wondered about, as that theme permeates every book he writes. He is married with children, but seems to have a soft spot for "the gay". Maybe it's the way his creative mind works, because the way he uses it in the stories makes for a more interesting tale (like how Sammy ends up marrying Joe's girl in K & C and Terry ends up bedding Grady's student in WB). If anybody can shed light on why Chabon does this I'd be interested.
posted by vito90 at 6:40 AM on March 6, 2003

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