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Thursday, July 14, 2016

The Writer's Life 7/14 - Pavement

Okay, I admit it, I occasionally read a chick lit novel, even though I know it will be hard to relate to the modern women portrayed. I just finished Pounding the Pavement, Jennifer van der Kwast's only novel, published in 2005. She has been doing freelance articles since graduating from Dartmouth and is currently working in communications in Amsterdam. PTP takes place in NYC and follows the trials and tribulations of a 24-year-old looking for work. Two years from her graduation from Brown, she has been unemployed for six months and is understandably cranky. She wants to work in film or for a literary magazine, but would take almost anything at this point in her life. The narrative is well-written and amusing, the character's asides stinging, although often unfair, as resentment rules her days. The situations are realistic, the observations keen. Although vastly different from the heroine, I rooted for her because of her work ethic and commitment to excellence. According to her page at LinkedIn, Van der Kwast has a degree in Film/Cinema/Video Studies. She even has an acting credit listed, for Terror Firmer (1999), in which a crew from Troma films tries to foil a serial killer. Her name is way down on the cast list, far from its most notable participants, porn legend Ron Jeremy and Motorhead's rebellious front man, the late Lemmy. 15 users at Amazon have rated Pounding the Pavement, forging to a consensus of 4.3 of five. I rate it 3.25. Although by no means a great novel, it was an impressive debut, a work of which to be proud.

Here are morsels from today's NY Post: For the first time the average cost of individual health care in the USA has risen above $10,000 per citizen... The term "bisexuality is out," "sexual fluidity" is in... McDonalds, Panera Bread, Subway and Chick-fil-A are blocking those who take advantage of their free wi-fi from watching porn. Starbucks has so far resisted. Imagine not being able to wait to get home to get your porn fix. Sheesh... The British have often been lampooned for their civility, and Prime Minister David Cameron played to type in his farewell yesterday. He could not have been classier. Kudos, sir... Government hacks have found two more items to provide "free" to the public. Tampons and Sanitary Pads will be made available in NYC schools, homeless shelters and jails. The price tag? $2.5 million. What will be next?... A man in Tennessee robbed a gas station using an interesting disguise -- his face wrapped in toilet paper. Supply your own punchline.

The floating book shop took to the pavement on this day of unforgiving humidity. My thanks to the woman who donated four romance novels in Russian, to the two women who bought three between them; to the woman who purchased The Quotable Woman compilation, and to the gentleman who spotted a work of non-fiction by a gentleman he recognized from appearances way back when Jack Paar hosted The Tonight Show. I thought the name was Alex Kingsley. A search turned up nothing except the high profile of a young attorney. Alas. If I had to establish odds about the possible sale of each of the hundred or so books I carry each day, that one, whose title eludes me, would have been assigned the longest.
Vic's Short Works:
Vic's 5th Novel:'s 4th novel:
Vic's 3rd Novel:
Vic's Short Story on Kindle:
Vic's Short Story Collection:
Vic's 2nd Novel: Kindle:
Vic's 1st Novel:

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