Posted on 27. Jun, 2012 by Scott.
My essay about Kafka and literary longing, “The Nothing That Is,” is in the summer issue of the wonderful Prairie Schooner: http://prairieschooner.unl.edu/. The piece will also appear in my forthcoming book, The Next Scott Nadelson: A Life in Progress, pub date March 1, 2013.
Posted on 14. May, 2012 by Scott.
Many thanks to Adam Gallari for a very generous review in the spring issue of Fifth Wednesday Journal. Here are some highlights:
“He writes with such empathy and pathos that it is often easy to overlook the faults that have brought these characters to their present stalemates in life. They are often voluntary martyrs, but Nadelson’s skilled nuance and his impeccable dialogue render these characters less as victims or symptoms of a situation than as case studies in loss and regret…
Taken alone, “West End” is a powerful novella, and could very well inhabit its own book… [It] is thrilling, profoundly sad, and worth the price of the book alone…
Nadelson has a gift. He is the rare writer who can discuss the precious and the loaded territory of nostalgia without his work becoming sentimental and trite, and it is because Nadelson is, more than anything else, honest in his depictions and descriptions of life sans glory. Taken in a world where the denial of truth in favor of the easy and the simple is the norm, Aftermath stands out, and Nadelson shines. The literary world needs more authors like him, writers of serious prose who aren’t afraid to tackle the metaphysical questions that constitute a life.”
Posted on 18. Apr, 2012 by Scott.
This is the kind of review writers fantasize about. Here are some highlights:
“At minimum, a writer’s writer—the “definition of obscurity,” according to Deborah Treisman, fiction editor of The New Yorker—does not reach the sizable audience he or she so richly deserves, despite placing work in respected literary periodicals and receiving a variety of awards. Operating in obscurity has its benefits, however: a writer’s writer often takes narrative risks that leave other capable writers agape with wonder…
The eight stories in Aftermath utilize a deep sense of place to reveal character and crank up the tension. The book balances the sophisticated turmoil of inner lives with just enough engaging plot elements to keep readers turning pages. Nadelson is comfortable writing about his native New Jersey, but bold—and skillful—enough to offer a story set in Jerusalem without it seeming like the work of a tourist, even if the characters in that story (”Oslo”) literally tour the city…
The collection’s bookends—”Dolph Schayes’s Broken Arm” and “West End”—are first-person narratives, but the six stories between them are told in the third person, a point of view that conveys Nadelson’s easy authority as he delves into the private lives of young men, boys, and couples in the midst of trouble. Critics looking to cast these off as mere domestic stories will find expansive, worldly complications throughout; history, politics, and religion are just three of the Big Ideas swimming laps in these rippling pools….”
Read the whole review here: http://www.dzancbooks.org/the-collagist/2012/4/13/aftermath-by-scott-nadelson-hawthorn.html
Posted on 20. Feb, 2012 by Scott.
Happy to find out Aftermath was a finalist for this year’s Grub Street National Book Prize in fiction. Also happy to take a back seat to the amazing Eileen Pollack: http://grubstreet.org/index.php?id=24
Posted on 27. Dec, 2011 by Scott.
I recently did a long interview with a great former student, Julie Judkins, for Fiction Writers Review. Read me spouting on and on about Bob Dyan, New Jersey, poetry, and the like, here: http://fictionwritersreview.com/interviews/dont-take-yourself-too-seriously-an-interview-with-scott-nadelson
Posted on 27. Nov, 2011 by Scott.
Reviews of Aftermath have been trickling in this fall; thanks to all who’ve read it (and had nice things to say). Here are some highlights:
From The Jewish Review: “The former Oregon Book Award Winner’s prose is elegant in its unpretentiousness. The depth of his insight is stunning. The breadth and detail of his knowledge of the ordinary lives of men and women in widely varying walks of life is astonishing.” Read the whole review here: http://www.jewishreview.org/arts/Nadelsons-new-stories-explore-how-we-cope
From the Ploughshares blog: “Nadelson creates characters so endearingly flawed that regardless of our actual similarities, we relate to each of them. Each page documents our own fears, insecurities, and heartbreaks. Each sentence becomes the moment we first remember hope failing.” Read the whole review here: http://word.emerson.edu/ploughshares/2011/11/22/aftermath/
From the Portland Monthly: “Nadelson is master of the anticlimax… Aftermath is an often-despairing testament to the elusiveness of closure, the infinite and insurmountable distance between even intimate lovers, but also to the human capacity for growth.” Read the whole review here: http://www.portlandmonthlymag.com/arts-and-entertainment/articles/scott-nadelson-aftermath-october-2011/
From Northwest Booklovers: “What illuminates these stories is how seamlessly Nadelson opens a window to the workings of the human heart.” Read the whole review here: http://www.nwbooklovers.org/2011/08/26/aftermath-by-scott-nadelson/
Posted on 11. Oct, 2011 by Scott.
The editors of The Best American Essays named “Go Ahead and Look” a Notable Essay of 2010. The essay was originally published in Oregon Humanities. Read it here: http://oregonhumanities.org/magazine/section/writing/scott-nadelson-on-forbidden-looking.
Posted on 07. Sep, 2011 by Scott.
My new story collection, Aftermath, was released on September 1. To catch the Nadelson world tour (from Portland to Corvallis), check out the schedule of events here: http://scottnadelson.com/events/.
I’ve been busy giving interviews and writing essays about the book for blogs and websites. Here are a few recent ones:
Posted on 08. Jul, 2011 by Scott.
My essay, “Three Muses,” a tale of young lust, literary influence, and flirting with Edna O’Brien, appears in the Summer 2011 issue of one of my favorite lit mags, The Southern Review: http://www.lsu.edu/thesouthernreview/CurrentIssue.html. Very excited about this one.
Posted on 08. Jul, 2011 by Scott.
Hawthorne Books recently purchased my first book of literary nonfiction, The Next Scott Nadelson: A Life in Progress, and have scheduled it to be published March 1, 2013. Here’s a description:
Beginning in the summer of 2004, Scott Nadelson’s life fell apart. His fiancée left him a month before their planned wedding. He moved into a drafty attic. His car’s brakes went out. He learned that his cat was dying. Over the next two years, he’d struggle, with equivocal and sometimes humiliating results, to get back on his feet, in the process re-examining his past to understand his present circumstances.
More than a collection of autobiographical essays, The Next Scott Nadelson: A Life in Progress is a literary self-portrait that revolves around the dissolution of a relationship but encompasses the long process of a young man’s halting self-discovery. Exploring episodes from the life of its author/narrator marked by failure, suffering, and hope, as well as literary and cultural influence, the book weighs the things that make us want to give up against the things that keep us going. Though many of the pieces are comic and self-deprecating—some self-lacerating—they are above all meditations on the nature of the self and the way it can be constructed through memory, desire, and the imagination. Together they form a larger narrative, a search for fulfillment and identity in a life often governed by fear.
With humor and unflinching honesty, Scott Nadelson scrutinizes his life to discover who he is and finds just how elusive such a discovery can be. To read the resulting book is to join him on a personal journey that is thoughtful, surprising, occasionally hilarious, and unapologetically human.