Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Book Report: Kevin Wilson's Tunneling to the Center of the Earth

The book I read for my book report is the book by Kevin Wilson called Tunneling to the Center of the Earth. I liked this book because it was a very good book and interesting. So you should also get this book and read it.

Kevin Wilson is kind of like the literary version of Data. You think he's just a man, but then, oh crap, he's lifting a frickin shuttle craft! Oh yeah, oops, forgot: Android!

It's true, Kevin Wilson is an android.

He's able to do the heavy lifting in stories that would crush most human writers. Can to compute what it takes to make compelling fiction in the blink of an eye. Ah-hah, that's a trick metaphor, because androids don't need to blink. Likewise, Kevin Wilson never flinches. Often, when tough scenes need to be written even the best, most beloved writers cop out. Not Kevin "Literary Android" Wilson. He'll see your hard-to-write dramatic scene and raise you some God damn truth and insight while he's at it.

The stories in Tunneling are often quirky (always? I'll have to check, but probably), sometimes taboo, but always moving. Even that not-as-good story--you know the one!--is still better than most other fiction being marketed today (err, sorry, meant being published today. double+err, meant being written today... stories are still written at some point in the process, right?).

He deftly captures the truth on all levels of his stories; from the smallest details to finding a distinct voice for each of the character that he represents. Kevin Wilson never resigns his stories to being just 'good enough' like so much 'literary' 'fiction' I read 'these' days, and just when you think 'eh, this is good enough, I suppose' BAM he's doing something amazing that only a literary android could do.

Kevin Wilson probably could have stopped working on stories after seeing they were finely crafted, or quirkily premised. Thankfully that wasn't good enough, and each story in this collection (except maybe the one) is the kind of story you think is the best thing you've read in years. Then you remember the last one, and soon find out the story you just read isn't the best, it's the one you're now reading (save for one, omg, sorry, I should have just pretended it was all so amazing, but I'm terrible at playing the game where you pretend everything a writer wrote is amazing! Every story absolutely amazing and one very good story is still amazing, though!).

This is the kind of rare collection that is 99% kick-your-ass-good (most short story collections being more like: oh, I remember that one good story... well, it was published in the New Yorker, so it has to be good, right?). This isn't just a short story collection. This is a manual to teach other writers how to not suck. Read it, study it, this is your Necronomicon, you creatures of the night! Or rather, creatures of the oh-it's-not-night-I've-just-been-sitting-in-my-office-writing-all-day-with-the-blinds-closed, but same thing.

Ah, but I know, what you're thinking: You compare Kevin Wilson to an android, like Data from Star Trek, but wouldn't that leave something to be desired. Androids aren't human, don't even have emotions...

Woah, stop right there! I didn't compare Kevin Wilson to an android. I revealed that he is an android. And you don't have to feel emotions to write them well. It's why 87% of writers are sociopaths! (fact!)

And, to address what else I know you're thinking, don't worry, I'm sure Kevin Wilson, like Data, is fully functional and anatomically correct:

1 comment:

  1. I'm fairly confident I have no idea what I just read. I like Kevin Wilson a lot.