A book club query…


Tod Kelly

Tod is a writer from the Pacific Northwest. He is also serves as Executive Producer and host of both the 7 Deadly Sins Show at Portland's historic Mission Theatre and 7DS: Pants On Fire! at the White Eagle Hotel & Saloon. He is  a regular inactive for Marie Claire International and the Daily Beast, and is currently writing a book on the sudden rise of exorcisms in the United States. Follow him on Twitter.

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27 Responses

  1. Avatar Ethan Gach says:

    Before I sign on to anything, I need to know where Robert Zemeckis 2007 Beowulf will be fitting into all this.Report

  2. Avatar James Hanley says:

    I’m interested, but can’t make any promises about commitment.

    Hell, I’m even behind in my bourbon club tasting.Report

    • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

      That’s why God made binge-clubbing.Report

      • Avatar James Hanley says:

        Wait, I have to read Beowulf in one sitting?

        Sigh, well, I guess it’s not really that long.Report

        • Avatar Maribou says:

          I first read Beowulf (the Seamus Heaney translation, which I recommend) hungover at 7 in the morning in someone else’s house the morning after a party, while I waited for people to wake up and come to breakfast with me. I finished it before anyone else was up and ready to go….

          (I’ve read it slower since; but really! It’s extremely accessible.)Report

    • Avatar Plinko says:

      I’ve forgotten what I’m even supposed to be drinking this month.

      /searches for the original club post.Report

  3. Avatar Plinko says:

    1. I’m in, finally time to dust off that English Lit. degree.

    2. Agnostic on this, depends on how much interest you’d like given I’m pretty sure MD is a lot quieter than the front page.

    3. I already have Heaney’s translation and it’s really good, so I’m happy to stick with it.

    4. I’d prefer to go traditional and talk about Beowulf first, myself, but I’ve read both several times. already.
    It may be more accessible for folks who’ve not read either to read Grendel first and then assess whether or not they’re also interested enough to get into Beowulf.Report

  4. Avatar Miss Mary says:

    1. Yes!
    2. Umm, front page?
    I have no opinion on 3 and 4Report

  5. Avatar Jaybird says:

    What would it look like?

    Would it be a one big post, wham, then talk about it or break it down into three “first third, middle third, last third” posts (or whatever fraction)?Report

    • Avatar J.L. Wall says:

      Even though Beowulf isn’t that long, breaking it into two or three posts might be a good idea — there are two adventures/settings/halves in the poem. Maybe it depends on how many parts we’d be inclined to spend on the Gardener?

      And I should definitely dig around to see if I’ve still got the Beowulf parody I wrote in 10th grade English — and see whether I still find it at all funny.Report

      • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

        This will be a puzzler. Beowulf is longer and will, I’m sure, require more sludging than Grendel. And yet I think at most Beowulf is broken up into the three adventures, while I could write a post of every single chapter of Grendel.Report

        • Avatar Maribou says:

          The Heaney Beowulf is only about 20 pages longer than Grendel, and I think 3 adventures sound just right.

          I can’t possibly read Grendel a chapter at a time as I will have flashbacks to my tenth and twelfth grade English classes, in which the life was wrung from several classics at a similarly stately pace.* However, if y’all read it, I will read it too.

          *the 11th grade teacher was much better; she made us read faster and spend more time reacting to what we’d read. My small group made a Star Trek:TOS parody of Romeo and Juliet.Report

          • Avatar J.L. Wall says:

            Your parody sounds much better than my 9th grade attempt to do a Godfather-esque parody/setting for a scene from A Midsummer Night’s Dream. (My Brando impression left a great deal to be desired.)

            But anyone into TOS parodies of classic literature should track down Kevin Brockmeier’s short story, “The Lady with the Pet Tribble.” (From, of course, Tolstoy’s “Lady with the Pet Dog.”) It’s in his collection The View from the Seventh Layer.Report

  6. Avatar Mike Schilling says:

    1. Yes
    2. All posts should be on MD (because I can fix my typos here.)
    3. No opinion
    4. YesReport

  7. Avatar J.L. Wall says:

    1. I’d do my best to participate, though my attempt to curtail my book-buying budget might mean that I’m only actively involved in the Beowulf half of things. Or maybe it’ll force me start taking advantage of the library situation around these parts…

    2. I see no reason NOT to do it on the front page, but I’ll defer to the crowd on this one.

    3. The Heaney translation as the “official” one is fine by me, though I always want to welcome alternate translations as long as everyone’s aware that the line numbers might not match up. I’ll be using whichever one is in the Norton Anthology — I think, in fact, that it’s the Heaney.

    4. I agree with you, Tod.Report

    • Avatar Plinko says:

      Heaney’s translation is now the one in the Norton Anthology, though I’m not sure what year that started, obviously after 1999 (so my copy doesn’t).Report