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Caroline Hagood

Caroline Hagood
New York, New York,
November 23
I'm a writer living in New York City. My articles have appeared in various publications, including The Guardian, Salon, the Huffington Post, and The Economist. My first book of poems, Lunatic Speaks, is now available from FutureCycle Press:


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Editor’s Pick
JUNE 3, 2010 11:13AM

5 Literary Hook-Ups I'd Like to See

Rate: 33 Flag

 Mind-bending, Postmodern Hot:


1. Joseph Heller and Thomas Pynchon                                       


Joseph Heller 

Joseph Heller 

Thomas Pynchon 

Best Known For: Heller—Catch 22; Pynchon: Gravity’s Rainbow

What it Would Look Like: This bookish combo would breed such a wealth of mind-bending, absurdly funny, paranoid prose marvels that I wouldn’t be surprised if it has already happened in an alternate literary universe, if there is a fiction deity after all.

Crowning Moment: The satire whistles and foghorns of beautifully controlled insanity go off as these two break all the rules of literary convention long into the night.


 Disaffected Youth Hot:

 2.  Marisha Pessl and J.D. Salinger

Marisha pessl 
Marisha Pessl 

J.D. Salinger

Best Known For: Pessl—Special Topics in Calamity Physics; Salinger—The Catcher in the Rye

What it Would Look Like: This couple would gorge themselves on a pessimistic feast of New York Times-lauded, whip smart first-person narration, and then lick the dripping grease of the policing of phony high school half-wits off their fingers.

Crowning Moment: When their night of love spawns precocious, fast-talking social critic children, old beyond their years, disillusioned with the man and the social machine alike, who later win awards for having the most unusual names.


Labryrinths of the Mind Hot:

3. Jorge Luis Borges and Mark Danielewski

Jorge Luis Borges 

Mark danielewski 
Mark Danielewski 

Best Known For: Borges—Ficciones; Danielewski—House of Leaves

What it Would Look Like: These two would wander their word-built labyrinths, half mad from living the surreal nightmare of life, until they become twisted together in their mutual mind coils.

Crowning Moment: When they finally manage to extricate themselves, the two geniuses tap-dance down each other’s respective cerebral staircases after discovering that the whole world is, in fact, a book.


Magic Realist Hot:

4. Gabriel García Márquez and Isabel Allende

Gabriel García Márquez

Isabel Allende 

Best Known For: García Márquez—One Hundred Years of Solitude; Allende—The House of the Spirits

What it Would Look Like:  An amorous, Spanish-language, yet universal, anti-dictatorship tour de force that is both muy inteligente and muy romantico

Crowing Moment: When a wise, magical bird crying penitent tears comes to life in order to tell them the meaning of love.


Maladjusted, Bed-Wetting Hot:

5. Woody Allen and Sarah Silverman

Woody allen 
Woody Allen 

Sarah Silverman 
Sarah Silverman 

Best Known For: Allen--Without Feathers; Silverman--The Bedwetter

What it Would Look Like: Nothing sexual because she’s too old for him; but, have no fear, a narcissistically self-deprecating, grappling with Jewish roots, depressive, laugh-a-minute, screwball time that offends everyone equally is had by all.

Crowning Moment: When, out of sheer moxie, he starts whaling on his clarinet while she breaks out into the heartwarming ditty “I Love Chinks!”

Which writers would you like to see get it on?

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big fun. One matchup would be Irving and Bob Dylan. Dylan could write the soundtrack to another Irving story that is so painfully true that weeping and screaming is all that happens.
Oh this is good . . . and micalpeace's addition had me laughing out loud, too!
I love this post, and the concept behind it, although I'm not so crazy about all the writers you've chosen.
In terms of literary hook-ups, how about this one?
Michael Chabon and Alison Bechdel.
He's famous for, among other things, THE AMAZING ADVENTURES OF KAVALIER AND CLAY, and she's known for FUN HOME.
Take his former Marvel-writing days and his love of the history of the comic book, his ability to spin a tale, and combine it with her graphic memoir prowess, her wry observations about life, and her shout-from-the-rooftops lesbianism, and I envision the first major novel with a lesbian super-heroine at its core.
What a hoot! And micalpeace's explanation is just plain perfect. Too busy to think of more right now but will come back to chuckle at other additions. **Sometimes I repeat "Jorges Luis Borges" over and over because the sound of his name is just so beautiful.**
a young Ernest Hemingway and... me!
i'd definitely like to see number 4 and number 5.
i'd definitely like to see number 4 and number 5.
I'm going to have to think about this one! funny post.
Karen Marie Moning (writes sexual tension occasionally well) and Katherine Paterson (writes real characters) I think I mainly just want to read well written soft porn, but it's not out there.
Margaret Atwood and Erica Jong -- Robber Bride v. Fear of Flying
D.H. Lawrence and James Joyce--Lady Chatterly's Lover v. Ulysses
Jean Paul Sarte and Henry Miller--Plague v. Tropic of Cancer
Amy Tan and Maxine Hong Kingston--Hundred Secret Senses v. Woman Warrior
I want to know more about the mind behind this one.

Way WAY over my head. How about PJ ORourke and Ann Richards?
Very ingenious and funny! R
Caroline -- Best post ever! :) I especially love numbers 2 and 5.
Helen Gurley Brown and Hugh Hefner. Now that would be a magazine.
How bout Oscar Wilde & Virginia Wolfe-- a gender-bending The Importance of Being Orlando!
Mark Twain and Stevie Smith. Not Waving, but Floating Down the Mississippi.
Love it!
particularly the WA/SS line "she's too old for him" I lol'ed ;-)
Good lord, I need to clean up some cobwebs; the pop-culture match-ups that come to mind are revealingly lowbrow. As for #1, I think it might actually break me; Pynchon alone has that effect.

R for the injection of class onto the front page...
wow! these would be some interesting hookups. i'd love an alternate reality with these guys writing in some sort of mind meld.
Dick and Jane.

Sit Spot.
I'd lick to seize a cold aberration between Clueless Cher-El and Lame Choice. Mayhaps "Malice: Screw The Cooking Class" or purr-cha(n)ts "The Indentures of Huck's Jim: Papa's Got A Brand New Flag". I'd laugh to see an hysterical romance like " Neither Leander, Nora Barnacle B ill", probability weave jest get "The Britches of Madrigal Clowning".

Here's one I'd go ON THE ROAD for ...
Jack Kerouac & Scarlett Sumac?

(btw his mother was French Canadian.)
Heh you are in the right profession. I have my first fiction writing class this Fall I wish you were teaching it!
Just reading about it is enough - I'm not sure I need to actually SEE anything. I'd pair Kafka with Chuck Palahniuk.
An interesting exercise. R u trying to be the eHarmony of the Literatti? R
Brilliant. Dr. Seuss and Shel Silverstein: They would make good, sweet love and be gentle like doves and continue to rhyme through the end of all time.
hilarious! Thanks for the laugh!
micalpeace: brilliant!

Owl: Thanks. I know it was a great addition!

Fingerlakeswanderer: wow, I love it: the first lesbian super-heroine!

The Good Daughter: I love the sound of his name, too.

Amanda G: hot!

Renatta: me, too:)

Silkstone: thanks, I'm glad you enjoyed.

hyblaean-Julie: who doesn't like well-written soft porn??? that's what I want to know.

a woman somewhere: be still my beating heart. a woman somewhere, eh? I'll have to find out where if there's a possibility of that kind of coupling there.

Jonathan: thank you so much! I love a lot about her, minus some of the jokes that are too much for me (like the rape ones), even though I know that they're meant as a critique of that kind of mentality

D Art: I'm honored.

Gwool: now that would be one politically savvy couple:)

Libmomrn: thanks so much.

Nick: I'm so glad you liked it.

OEsheepdog: that WOULD be a magazine. that would be THE magazine.

Lou: perfect!

Kathy: ha, love it.

jeanv999: well she is, isn't she? practically an old crone in woodyland

Nikki: I'm glad you think class was injected.

lemonpulp: oh boy, so would I

mr Fawkes: a worthy entry

Yuselof The Worm: wow, your suggestions are so inventive. I love them

Scarlett: now that would be one to watch

Johnpaul: I'm touched. really.

Bellwether: I don't know, I'd like to SEE that

Trudge: that I am, that I am

Yawp: that's exactly what would happen I think

Lucy: glad it made you chuckle
Ayn Rand + Karl Marx. Result? We're living it ...

well done post, this is what a Salon is about ...

I feel a bit out of my depth and I'm a reader! I'm writing these down so I can read a few! Wow, as said before, I would also love to take a class from you! Very cool!
Oh gosh, Caroline, now you're exposing me for the pretender that I am. I don't get ANY of these (these are jokes... right?). I have READ Marquez and Allende, but in Spanish, and honestly, it was more to exercise my brain than to appreciate their style. My brain is better, but well, I remember Harry Potter better.

You are, certifiably, better-read than I.

However if you need to hear about Verdi or Puccini, I can help you.
I love this, Caroline!!! You never cease to amaze me!!! I only disagree with Gabriel Garcia-Marquez and Isabel Illende. This is because: A. Me first. Me first. She can't have him. I get him. And also because as much as I love Illende, she is also a student of Magical Realism but on nowhere near the level of Garcia-Marquez. I love her, don't get me wrong. But I just don't think it would be a good match. Instead, let's put her with um..... Michael Cunningham and I'll take Garcia-Marquez. xoxo
love it. where would doris lessing, dorothy parker, jane austin, Ann Rand, omg so many women go ? Gay? kidding. Too many to count those great writers I loved your piece!!!!
Oahusurfer: thanks! ha, I guess we are living it.

Leslie: wow, thank you. That's very kind of you.

Divorce Bard: well, you know how these book things go--if you haven't read that particular one you won't get it. I feel that way all the time when I haven't read something. You're not a pretender at all. I'm sure if I read your book lists, I'd be lost.

PattyJane: so glad you enjoyed it. And yes, you can have Marquez. He's all yours!

Tracy: now those would be quite a mixture. Thanks so much!
the only one on this list that i've read is salinger and that, too long ago to remember but the literary couplings is def. a fun concepts. sets me to looking at my bookshelf and going hmmm...
Tichoana: so glad to hear it got you poking around the old bookshelf.
Brilliant idea. I myself would feel a lot more sane if I could at least spend an hour conversing with some of the literary geniuses you mention above in stead of the morons I have to deal with in my everyday life.
I also think Kurt Vonnegut and Pynchon would have been a good combination. Of course Pynchon's prose is infinitely more complex but I feel they share a dystopian, wildly idiosyncratic perspective.
Adrian--that's definitely a pairing I'd like to see!