BURN PILE: Too much voice, too many pictures, the Nobel, writers who don't write in cinema, and other concerns from around the Web.

To be filed with Problems I'd Like to Have - joining such travails as "embroiled in a love parallelogram" or "needing an accountant" - is the horror of having a distinctive style. I do see the author's point though in this article about authorial parochialism - a fancy way to say "all the shit you write sounds the same" - although he puts it more elegantly. "There’s something undeniably great about having Voice like that, a voice you can’t escape, like Tom Waits. Or Cher...There’s a downside to that much voice. An unsurprisingness. A feeling of sloggy repetition and even self-parody." From the Millions. 

George Scialabba is a critic's critic, whatever that means, and he's just quit his day job which prompted a celebration by his admirers. To join them, here's a particularly apt description of Christopher Hitchen's writing:

 "of course, not all of Hitchens was very good, even before 9/11 drove him mad. He was always too ready with abuse (‘stupid’ and ‘tenth-rate’ were particular weaknesses). He is a compulsive name-dropper: In his very short Letters to a Young Contrarian, for example, the words, ‘my friend,’ followed by a distinguished name, appear dozens of times, giving the reader’s eyebrows a considerable workout." From the Chronicle of Higher Education. 

The Oregon Shakespeare Festival has commissioned a translation of the Bard into modern English. And of course, many many people have an opinion. The Wall Street Journal elucidates why this is not such a terrible idea. 

You think that's a pretty mountain, eh? You think the light has never broken through the aspens like that before? How about we go take a photo of the most photographed barn in America? Camera Restricta, is a speculative design of a camera that would preempt compulsive photographers from snapping away at well-snapped vistas. Because do we really need another picture of the Louvre? From Hyperallergic. 

And, for context, an article by Teju Cole, who has an excellent column on photography for the New York Times, about the glut of digital photos and their artistic potential.  

Much like digital photos, there's a surplus of films about writers and writing, in which younger writers are apprenticed by older writers who are, surprise, surprise, damaged. From Electric Literature. 

More importantly, on the Harper's Blog, there's a conversation with Bryan Doerries, Creative Director ofOutside the Wire, who brings classic tragedies to intimate venues. The embedded video of Paul Giamatti performing Steven Mitchell's translation of The Book of Job speaks to concept better than I can. If perhaps you have a subscription to Harper's, first of all, good for you, second, can I borrow your username, there's an excellent article about Doerries from a year ago. From Harper's. 

And lastly, Svetlana Alexievich was awarded the Nobel Prize. Here's a profile from the New York Times. 

And here's an excerpt of her writing from the Paris Review.