Tag: Michael A. Wood

The Extra-Large Baltimore Lit Parade for December: John Barth, Stephen Dixon, Justin Sirois, Jen Michalski, and More Greats!

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John Barth
John Barth

IVY10-e1350927055992We’re pleased to present writer Joseph Martin’s The Ivy Bookshop-sponsored column for the Baltimore Fishbowl, “The Lit Parade,” a celebration and thoughtful examination of the epic local lit scene that too often goes unreported, unread.

Once again, we’re at the (briefly) snow-covered tail end of a year’s worth of reading, and this particular annum has been a doozy – from brainy juvenilia revisions to collections of darkly funny riffs, serial novels about truly killer apps, small-run poetry chapbooks, and at least one sorely needed history of Charm City’s booze trade, 2012 has given fans of local lit a veritable Santa’s sack of new, distinctive writing.  That in mind, this month’s Lit Parade is devoted to excavating some stuff you may have missed and giving some Baltimore Fishbowl favorites another round of praise.  Let the lists commence:

The Baltimore Lit Parade for October: Three Troubled Policemen, “13 Girls,” and van den Berg’s Scary-Good Book Deal

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Just in time for Halloween, the second installment of writer Joseph Martin’s column features bloody true-crime fiction by local authors, WORMS, and more frightfully cool lit scene news.

Much as we tend to play up our Hon Blievers, Book Things, and park-laden, neurosis-free psyche, few towns teem with morbid curiosity quite like Charm City.  From Mr. Poe’s C. Auguste Dupin and Dashiell Hammett’s Sam Spade up through David Simon’s “The Wire” cast and The Sun’s exquisite police blotter, Baltimore has long produced fictive body exhumers and, perhaps more, an audience smitten with the dusty, matchlit corners of criminal activity.  White flight, abandoned neighborhoods, and a lately discarded status as America’s murder capital underpin residents’ understanding of home; unsurprisingly, a rabid local market exists for true crime and its clinical, fact-bearing explication. Building on its author’s near-decade in the local police department, Michael A. Wood, Jr.’s Eliot (self-published) honors that curiosity, hitting very Baltimorean forensic notes even as it serves up a shaggy genre thriller.