Essay On Favorite Plays

I was a fan of his non-fiction writing in the late 1990s (Air Conditioned Nightmare, Black Spring) and when I found this book it blew my mind. Regarding Miller, I’d never seen a writer list more than a handful of favorite books, but Miller’s book was dense and deep, thick with references.

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Not sure what grade it was, probably early high school, but in that experience was likely one of the seeds that made me eventually want to be a writer.

These days I read about 90% non-fiction to 10% fiction – most fiction tries way to hard to seem real, and I find it unreadable.

I’d go on to read many of his books (The Star Thrower, All The Strange Hours, The Firmament of Time…

what great titles) paying attention to how me made everything seem interesting, mysterious and wonderful simultaneously. He was the first essayist I read, and i soon discovered Emerson, devouring his collections (I’ve read self-reliance a dozen times or more), and wandering my way towards Montaigne, Thoreau, and other classics.

He was prolific, with many essay collections, but perhaps most memorable among them is his Why I am Not Christian.

He is one of my heroes for many reasons, but with this book it was for his willingness to state what he believed despite the consequences.

Enders Game, the book everyone at CMU was reading in ’92, provided a profound experience similiar to A Separate Peace (“ah ha!

now i get the concept of reading for pleasure”), but for more cerebral reasons.

I didn’t read much from age 8 to 18 (curiously I’ve read voraciously before and after this period – I blame girls and sports) and A Separate Peace, by John Knowles was likely the first novel I that moved me.

I hadn’t felt anything that personal in a book before.

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