Mormon Lit: Who Was Samuel W. Taylor?

Samuel Wooley Taylor (1907-1997) was a grandson of John Taylor (the third president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints) and one of thirty-six children of John Whittaker Taylor (an apostle of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints). In the taxonomy of Mormon authors, Continue reading “Mormon Lit: Who Was Samuel W. Taylor?”

What Bad Mormon Literature Do We Need?

One day, early in my career at a children’s book publisher here in New York, I told my boss how bad the books of another, well-known and well-established, children’s book publisher were in my view. To my surprise, he disagreed, and told me that this publisher and these books had played, and continued to play, an important role in the industry. He was right. I now know that every part of the book publishing industry needs bad books! Continue reading “What Bad Mormon Literature Do We Need?”

The Importance of Being Ironic, Part Two

This is the second part of a two part series on irony.  The first part may be found here.  Irony is by nature a boundless subject, and while the temptation to go on and on about it is compelling (for a ironophile like myself), this will do for the blogging moment.  References for Part One and Part Two can be found at the end of this post. 

When we find ourselves to be irony’s dupes, we experience the sudden revelation the joke thrusts upon us: we are caught in the act, or the rug is pulled out from under us, or there is a box in a box in a box, all attractively wrapped but containing at the center nothing, or the center might not be in the middle of things. Somehow we made the wrong choice or invested wholly in an incomplete idea. Thus we gain the pleasure of experiencing subsequent, perhaps inevitable rewards for our wrongheadness. Continue reading “The Importance of Being Ironic, Part Two”

The Importance of Chapbooks

After my post a week ago on the launch of a poetry chapbook, William commented:

Considering what a large role chapbooks play in the larger poetry community, I’m a bit suprised that there haven’t been more published for the Mormon literary market (even as small as it is).[see comment]

In response, I promised this post on Chapbooks and what their role is and can be. Continue reading “The Importance of Chapbooks”

“Backslider” Turns 20

One of the more interesting events in Mormon Literature this year is the 20th anniversary of the publication of The Backslider, perhaps the finest LDS novel published to date. (The other novel widely considered for this designation is Maureen Whipple’s The Giant Joshua. Personally, I prefer The Backslider). Continue reading ““Backslider” Turns 20″