Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Flannery O'Connor: What I'm Reading

Today's post will be about Southern Gothic literature. Yeah, yeah, like you I was forced to read  William Faulkner and Tennessee Williams in school...but never never Flannery O'Connor! So to satisfy my curiosity, I just checked out her entire collection from the library today. And I'm looking forward to sinking my teeth into it!

I have an idea for a southern gothic story, but I'm checking my math before I sit down to write it. The more I ponder about the sort of writer I want to be, the more I internalize the word "gothic" into my personal lexicon of self-characterizing definitions.

But "southern gothic" is something else. An unfamiliar term. A perplexing string of words. And yet I was born in the south. My parents were raised in the south. I currently reside in the south. My boyfriend is a self-proclaimed "southerner." And despite all that, I don't identify as "southern" or even "southern black." 

Southerners are a fascinating mystery to me. I've lived in many parts of the United States, from upstate New York to the Nevada-California border in the Sierra Mountains. Tennessee, Indiana, Connecticut, North Carolina and now Texas. I've been everywhere...and my cultural "roots" dangle nowhere. Yet I think I know enough about southerners to write a convincing southern gothic. We'll see, won't we? Over and out.
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