Alison Clement

observations from a novelist who sometimes wants to say something small and see it published immediately


>not a trashy novel

> Tracy told me apologetically that she read my first book, and she could hardly put it down. She said she didn’t usually read trashy novels. I beg your pardon. Well, in the first place, you never have to apologize to a writer for not being able to put her book down………….but is she right? Is my book a trashy novel? When people ask about it, I say it’s a […]

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>Lydia’s Not Poem

>Today is the first day of school and, in honor of that, I’m going to publish a poem written by a 4th grader named Lydia. I taught a poetry workshop to her class a few years ago, using Kenneth Koch’s lesson plans on teaching poetry to kids. This poem is what he calls a “not poem:” Not Poem I am LydiaI am not a baseball batI am not a tuna […]

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>The Waffle House

> I hardly knew Chuck when he came to the bar where I worked and gave me a copy of Ivan Illich’s book, Deschooling Society. I read it and dropped out of college. Illich, in case you don’t know, argues that education isn’t really about learning but about maintaining class structure. He argues against experts mediating and defining our experience.I learned what I know about writing by the act of […]

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