NOLA BOOK AND LITERARY NEWS

from Nathan C. Martin and Friends.
Shaq Attack

Shaquille O’Neal’s outsized persona and multitudinous forays into everything from acting to law enforcement sometimes overshadow what an incredible basketball player he was. He ranks fifth in all-time scoring in the NBA, he’s won four national championships (including three consecutive with the Los Angeles Lakers), and he is one of only three players to earn the NBA MVP, All-Star game MVP, and Finals MVP all in one season (the other two were Willis Reed and Michael Jordan). So, to say that his persona sometimes overshadows his basketball playing says a hell of a lot about his persona.

Shaq will be at the Garden District Book Shop this Saturday, Dec. 3, from 12 – 2 p.m. to read from and sign his new memoir, Shaq Uncut: My Story. The book purports to give insight into his “candid thoughts” on various sports celebrities and other topics, but holy shit, I just want to get a picture with Shaq. And I never want to get a picture with anyone (except with Richard Ford while wearing my “Rock Springs, Wyoming” sweatshirt—so, if anyone can help me make that happen, let me know: nathan[at ] press-street.com). Shaq is just so big and funny and awesome. The first two CDs I owned as a kid were Shaq Diesel and Siamese Dream, which came out in the same year (I listened to Shaq Diesel way more than I ever listened to Siamese Dream). I’ve watched Blue Chips at least a dozen times.

This is not to say I doubt Shaq’s abilities to artfully put thoughts and sentences together (though the name of the book’s ghostwriter appears prominently enough on the cover to suggest he had quite a bit of help). The last time the New York Times caught up with Shaq he mentioned that he’s working on his Ph.D. from Barry University, in the Miami suburbs, writing a dissertation titled “How Leaders Utilize Humor or Aggression in Leadership Styles.” His pursuit of higher education has been consistent throughout his career, in part because of a promise he made to his mom, and in part because he realized, as he noted to the crowd at his graduation from Louisiana State University in 2004, that doing so would allow him to “get a real job” after basketball. He currently hosts the TV show “Shaq Vs.” in which he competes against experts in their own fields to prove that he can beat anyone at their own game. Such challenges have included singing against Justin Beiber, monologuing against Jimmy Kimmel, and race car driving against Dale Earnhardt, Jr.

Hand-in-Glove Conference Guide

Hand in Glove Conference Guide
Essay by Amy Mackie, edited by Bob Snead, designed by Erik Keisewetter

This beautiful book, designed and printed by Erik Kiesewetter of Constance for the Hand-in-Glove Conference, includes a guide to all of the conference happenings Oct 17-20, 2013, an informative map of the artist run spaces on and around St. Claude Ave, and an extensive essay by Amy Mackie about the history of self organized contemporary art [...]

Photo by Sophie Lvoff in WE'RE PREGNANT

We’re Pregnant
Words by Nathan Martin. Photography by Akasha Rabut, Sophie T. Lvoff, and Grissel Giuliano.

We’re Pregnant is a chapbook of short fiction by Room 220 editor Nathan C. Martin along with photography by Akasha Rabut, Sophie T. Lvoff, and Grissel Giuliano. The book contains three of Martin’s short stories—which explore in morbid fashion anxieties related to sex, disease, marriage, and childbirth—with images inspired by the stories from each of the photographers.

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The People Is Singular
Poems by Andy Young and Photographs by Salwa Rashad

The People Is Singular, by local poet Andy Young and Egyptian photographer Salwa Rashad, is a personal response to the Egyptian Revolution. Rashad’s vision includes everyday people—Muslims and Christians, young and old, the foregrounded and the peripheral. Her perspective is from inside the events as they unfolded. Andy Young, a New Orleans poet married to [...]

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Curtain Optional
by Brad and Jim Richard

In both poetry and prose, Brad Richard explores the influence of his father’s work on his own, as well as the experience of growing up as the son of an artist while becoming an artist himself. Jim Richard is a professor of painting at the University of New Orleans and has exhibited at the Solomon [...]

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How to Rebuild a City
Edited by Anne Gisleson & Tristan Thompson w/ design and artistic direction by Catherine Burke

Beautifully designed, sometimes fun, always informative, How to Rebuild a City: Field Guide from a work in Progress, is a reflection of the many ways that New Orleanians have realized our way towards recovery, actively and creatively engaging with our communities.

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Bitter Ink
by Brian Zeigler & Raymond “Moose” Jackson

BBoth originally from Detroit, cousins Brian Zeigler and Raymond “Moose” Jackson began collaborating while Brian was harboring Moose in Vermont during Katrina evacuation. While their doodling proclivities may have made them rustbelt exiles from the rest of their autoworker family, together they produce seductive aphorisms of wit and weirdness that provoke, confound and celebrate a [...]