Dan Chaon seems like a wise man.
I first became aware of his writing when I reviewed his superb collection Among the Missing for the San Francisco Chronicle.
And he's been on my mind lately because I really want to read his new novel Await Your Reply.
There's also been some heavy linkage to this essay, which takes aspiring writers to task -- and rightfully so -- for not reading and supporting literary magazines.
Here's the quote that's getting quoted a lot:
"The writing community is full of lame-o people who want to be published in journals even though they don’t read the magazines that they want to be published in. These people deserve the rejections that they will undoubtedly receive, and no one should feel sorry for them when they cry about how they can’t get anyone to accept their stories."
Toward the end he mentions Hobart and Avery as two great magazines that writers should read and know about. I couldn't agree more. (The new issue of Avery, by the way, should be out soon.)
Moreover, Chaon was recently interviewed by One Story. But it wasn't for one of his stories; it was for a story by his late wife Sheila Schwartz, whose story "Finding Peace" is the current issue of One Story. If nothing else, read the last few paragraphs. Break your heart.
And one more thing: this amazing tribute to his wife, published a while back at The Rumpus. Talk about break your heart.