Also in the news: A pair of charming personal essays, and an entire bookstore you can win in an essay contest. Welcome to your Daily Blunt!
It’s as if high-gloss fanfic is being generated right before our eyes: “Call Me By Your Name” director Luca Gaudagnino has confirmed that he and novelist André Aciman are already working on a sequel to the Oscar-winning romance, in which the original protagonists Elio and Oliver reunite in the early ’90s and travel the world together. “It’s gonna be a new movie, a different tone,” says the director, which really makes one wonder if they’ll address many of the questions and issues involving gay sexuality – or even that era’s HIV epidemic – which the original film declined to touch on.
If you’ve ever dreamed of owning your very own bookstore, this could be your chance: owners of a store in Pennsylvania called From My Shelf Books & Gifts have pledged to give away their entire establishment to the winner of an essay contest. Apparently all you need to do is “explain, in 250 words or fewer, why bookstores are important to the community.” If fewer than 4,000 people enter, the game is off. You’ve got until March 31 to put your booklust into words!
When Ramona Ausubel booked her first ocean cruise, she was hoping to connect with her seafaring ancestors. What happened instead was far less inspiring: days of typhoon-level wind and waves which sickened everyone on board and dampened any hopes for ancestral reflection. Writing about the journey for LitHub, Ausubel sees the humor in all this now, but it will likely be a while before she indulges in any vodka or disco-dancing, or especially borscht: “By the time we admitted defeat, the dining room was covered in red splashes and looked like the scene of a terrible crime.”
Here’s another great personal essay from Electric Literature: “I Fell In Love Because She Hated Shakespeare,” in which Christine Previs challenges the literary biases she once held dear. “If I liked her, and I liked Shakespeare, she had to like Shakespeare. There must have been some mistake,” she writes — and it appears there was, since the pair has now been together for six years and counting. That’s one more happy ending we can credit to the Bard!