The After Life

The After Life

by Daniel Ehrenhaft

Paperback

$8.99

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781595140807
Publisher: Penguin Young Readers Group
Publication date: 02/29/2000
Pages: 272
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.19(h) x 0.70(d)
Lexile: 660L (what's this?)
Age Range: 12 - 17 Years

About the Author

"[I know] what it’s like to be scared, and to put things off, and to worry about opening up to perfect strangers. Which is sort of akin to the process of being a human being, even if you aren’t a writer. . . . And seriously, what is writing, other than telling stories about being a human being?"—Daniel Ehrenhaft


ABOUT THE AUTHOR


If there’s one thing you can say about Daniel Ehrenhaft–aside from the fact that he’s worn the same corduroys for the past eleven years–it’s that he has a difficult time writing about himself. So when Random House asked him to contribute a little autobiography for this Website, he was naturally apprehensive.

At first, he decided to do some research on the subject of autobiography. He referred to this very site to read what other Random House authors had written about themselves. It didn’t help. For starters, he discovered that all these authors led fascinating, productive lives. To make matters worse, they all offered trenchant insight about what it means to be a writer.

As far as Mr. Ehrenhaft can tell, his own life as a writer boils down to a six-part regimen:

1) Drinking cheap coffee
2) Procrastinating (fiddling with the stereo, playing air guitar, etc.)
3) Reading a lot. Often, he’ll read something brilliant or moving or hilarious by someone he’s never read before, someone whose words end up blowing his mind–which is followed by
4) Jealousy and panic
5) Lunch
6) A nap

But, in a strange way, this process does eventually inspire him to put pen to paper. (Or his fingertips to the computer keyboard, as it were.) After all, he knows what it’s like to be scared, and to put things off, and to worry about opening up to perfect strangers. Which is sort of akin to the process of being a human being, even if you aren’t a writer.

And seriously, what is writing, other than telling stories about being a human being? If that sounds evasive and simplistic…well, maybe it is. On the other hand, that’s probably why a lot of writers do what they do. They open up in their stories in ways that–at their best–illuminate truths and complexities not only about themselves, but about their readers, as well. They write precisely so they don’t have to be evasive, which is what makes reading such a blast.

So really, Daniel Ehrenhaft just writes because he loves to read, and he aspires to do what all his favorite authors have done for him. In fact, if he had it his way, he would get paid to read. Then again, if he had it his way, he and his wife would live in a huge castle with a billiards room and a pool shaped like a figure eight, and a custom-made electric guitar signed by the surviving members of The Clash.

Until that happens, though, he’ll probably keep writing.

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3.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Overall I enjoyed the book, although it strays from the plot every once in a while. But you MUST finish the book if you start it. The ending is beautiful, suprising, and something you'll never forget.
Guest More than 1 year ago
wen i saw it the book looked fine but it was one of those books that took a long tim to get to the point. it had maybe 164 pages and it really got to the 'road trip' on the 163 page....im just sayin that ther was toooooo much backround info
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was great. It made me laugh a lot. The main character is the best. Things get a little weird in the middle. You should read this just b/c it is funny