Monday, July 03, 2006

Robertson Gets Some Love

Dave Astor of Editor and Publisher did a fair and accurate summary of the guts of my little talk in Boston under the headline "Survey Shows Some Columnists Get 'Hot' While Writing."

Here's the first bit:

There are thousands of columnists in America, so a survey that drew 154 responses should be taken with a grain of salt. But the poll did offer some insights into the profession, including an interesting comparison to sex.

The University of San Francisco's J. Michael Robertson unveiled the results of his survey Saturday at the National Society of Newspaper Columnists (NSNC) conference here. Columnists polled included salaried and freelance writers from 38 states and Canada who write in categories such as political, general-interest, humor, and metro.

When asked "what writing a column is like," 26% of salaried columnists called it a job and 17% likened it to sex. But Robertson explained that this wasn't necessarily a positive thing; he said some columnists feel like they're "married to a nymphomaniac" because they have to start working on another column as soon as they're finished with the previous one.

Me and D.H. Lawrence. Just two guys who figured out that sex sells and who are/were willing to ride the wave.


Anonymous said...

Toward the end of his life, Lawrence developed a relationship with a cow that is best described as strange.

Anonymous said...

This is another Anonymous. Judith Krantz wrote rings around Lawrence on the subject, and perhaps you as well. Her mega-blockbuster Princess Daisy starts conventionally enough:

"Oh, yes! she thought, opening her lips to him, tumbled and craving and daring. She arched her body toward him, nudging his hands toward her breasts until they were clasped and claimed. . . . He bent to the glorious task, dimly aware that never before had life flowed through him without the static and interferences of thought, never had he been so close to drinking the elemental wine of life. He tasted it on her lips and on her nipples and on her belly, his whole skin drank thirstily of her, and when he thrust into her, he knew he had arrived at last at the source, the spring . . ."

But, after all that arching and nudging and clasping and claiming and drinking and thrusting, Mrs. Krantz understood the need to bring things down to earth:

"Afterward, as they lay together, half asleep, but unwilling to drift apart into unconsciousness, Daisy farted, in a tiny series of absolutely irrepressible little pops that seemed to her to go on for a minute."

....J.Michael Robertson said...

Daisy farted. Atlas shrugged.

Anonymous said...

I haven't seen such an expression of emptiness since The Stranger.

Anonymous said...

Why drag Ayn into this sordid discussion?

....J.Michael Robertson said...

I can row a boat, Camus?