Bookclub Meeting, the third: Closer All the Time, by Jim Nicols

On Sunday, November 27th, we’ll be meeting to discuss this relatively new, Maine-based novel. I somehow doubt we’ll have a lack of material to talk about, as some of us are even going to see Nicols read early that week, but here is an interview with the author that covers some really interesting topics. Enjoy, and feel free to post any additional resources!



On Reading and the Creative Activity

This is a piece that I wrote almost a year ago now while living in Le Mans, France as an English teacher. I edited it many times, and feel that it’s rather polished for what it is, and so I’m putting it up here by reason of not letting it rot in the Documents folder of my computer.

I have since written many things on the topic of “reading,” and find this particular piece to be a little too general; however I do not find that a good enough reason to throw the thing out, or to not share it with others. This is, indeed, something that I’ve written and edited. It would seem wrong to put it away, as to do so would make anything I am making or might possibly make equally as inconsequential and destroyable. I wrote it, as I have been writing most of my essays recently, as if I was sharing ideas with a friend, perhaps a fellow reader or writer, and not for the inclusion in any kind of anthology or greater work.

Please feel free to comment on it here, or email me at, in order to give it some life in discussion.

On Reading and the Creative Activity

To say that “reading is good” sounds to most of us, in 2016, like a maxim repeated to the point of losing any of its denotative sense, instead connoting only a self-imposed wisdom and worldliness. Indeed, most people seem eager to acknowledge that reading is good, whether they do it themselves or not, and that the question is only how to actually find the time to read. But I am a reader, and have always in a silent, unacknowledged way agreed with the most clichéd of such maxims. In my journal I would write, without a trace of sarcasm or irony, such statements—that reading is good; that it can be one of the best uses of my time; that it is a moment of expression, of creation, important as writing itself or any other artistic activity. Continue reading