Wednesday, April 11, 2007

R.I.P. Kurt Vonnegut

Kurt Vonnegut, author of Slaughterhouse Five and many other great novels died Wednesday apparently as a result of head injuries suffered in a fall a few weeks ago.

His writing has played a huge role in my development as an author. I've always been a fan of satire, and in my opinion, no one did it better than him. He was once quoted as saying, "I will say anything to be funny, often in the most horrible situations," and for anyone who knows me...they can see why this man's writing would appeal to my sick and twisted view of the world.

Vonnegut, along with about a dozen authors, are probably the reason why I became a writer...but now you have one less person to blame personally.

Vonnegut will be sorely missed...


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the news, J.

I'm sure a lot of people out there would say that Vonnegut was a lousy novelist, and that's probably true, but he was a great writer. He didn't hide behind his fiction, he was out in front. He didn't care about suspense. He turned the old mantra "show not tell" on its head and used the story much as Voltaire and Rabelais and GB Shaw did, to illustrate his principles, softening the blow with a sense of humor. His novels are propaganda, meant to wake us up and shove us out the door -- to be inspired by his hero, Eugene Debs -- to pull together and make the world a better place for the living.

The dead don't need our help; we dispose of their bodies for our own sake.

Robert E. Porter


If you like Vonnegut, have you read anything by the Czech author of _Too Loud a Solitude_ or _Arcadia_ and other plays by Tom Stoppard?

Anonymous said...

"One of the few good things about modern times: If you die horribly on television, you will not have died in vain. You will have entertained us."

--Kurt Vonnegut