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Curiosity's Cats: Writers on Research by Bruce Joshua Miller

By Bruce Joshua Miller

"Each morning i'd strike out for this temple of studying within the crisp autumn air . . . with a feeling of goal and the conviction that this used to be the place I belonged."—Marilyn Stasio from "My learn Project"

Inspired in part via Richard Altick's the student Adventurers, the 13 writers in Curiosity's Cats supply robust arguments for the price of hands-on study, be it chasing records, cracking mysteries, interviewing long-lost topics, or vacationing unique and not-so-exotic locales.

Alberto Martinez explains how diligence with dates promises clues to unencumber the main tricky old puzzles. Jan Reid explores the variation among study for an epic novel and examine to jot down the epic biography of a pal. Margot Livesey suspects that she maintains to put in writing novels just to do the learn. yet each essay testifies to the truth that study is effective not just as a result of product that can consequence from it, yet as the technique itself fulfills a simple human need.

Contributors comprise: Philip J. Anderson, Annette Kolodny, Theodore Kornweibel, Jr., Margot Livesey, Alberto Martínez, Bruce Joshua Miller, Katherine corridor web page, Jan Reid, Ali Selim, Marilyn Stasio, Ned Stuckey-French, Bruce White, and Steve Yates.

"Research has continually appeared just like homework to me. regardless of the subject, i think like a naughty schoolboy who is cramming for an examination. What a aid to achieve it's not that i am by myself. via various equipment and situations, the writers during this attention-grabbing assortment display that examine, like exploration, is tough, maddening, tricky, and arduous. yet like every nice explorer (or naughty schoolboy), we all know we can't achieve our objective with out it, and the adventure is frequently extra profitable than the destination." —Alan Cumming, actor and author

"In our age of the Twitter and the web, it really is this type of pleasure to work out the paintings of the essay so alive and robust. learn this publication and rediscover that genuine wisdom and connections nonetheless live on the resource: out within the box and contained in the human condition." —Dan Buettner, nationwide Geographic Fellow and manhattan instances best-selling writer of The Blue Zones

"No e-book has higher portrayed the intimate, occasionally exasperating dating among author and learn. it is all right here, and it truly is by no means dull—the thrill of the chase, the unforeseen discoveries, the crushing setbacks, the exhilarating 'Aha!' moments. there is even a stray bookworm—yes, a true one—that actually wriggles off the page." —Patricia T. O'Conner, writer of Woe Is I and, with Stewart Kellerman, Origins of the Specious: Myths and Misconceptions of the English Language.

"If you've ever sensed a wonderful tale or a startling emotion hidden inside a historical rfile, photograph, artifact, or position, you will discover many kindred spirits during this inspiring booklet. It made me are looking to drop every thing to set out on a grand highbrow experience within the nearest archive." —Jack El-Hai, writer of The Nazi and the Psychiatrist and continuous: A Turbulent heritage of Northwest airways

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I didn’t have to go to the library to realize that Inge, a German and an illegal immigrant, lived in Minnesota through some very explosive and interesting times: World War II, in which her eldest would most likely have served; the unrest of the 1960s; the volatility of the farm economy throughout the century; Hubert Humphrey’s contributions to national politics; and the arrival in Minnesota of the Vikings and the Twins. But I needed more information about what it meant to live through these times.

So, an old house, yes, but specifically a simple one built in 1920. Like a Sears kit home, of which no one really seemed to have a clear vision. I used my hands to explain the scope and shape and straight lines. I asked if anyone had ever been to the Mac-Groveland neighborhood of St. ” Maybe, as we had done in Mac-Groveland, the farmers referred to these homes by another name. I went back to my mom. She knew what I was looking for. She is an artist, a proud graduate of the Minneapolis College of Art and Design, and worked as an illustrator for the great Minnesota department store Dayton’s, back in the 1950s.

There were a couple of doors on the front of the house that faced the road, and at first I couldn’t figure out where to knock. I tried both, back and forth, smiling and waving to my mom, who was most likely listening to MPR on the car radio. Finally, after several knocks, I saw a curtain pull back and an old man, crotchety and frightening, scowl out at me. ” He opened the door. I asked if he was Martin, Martin Henke. He was. I told him I was Evelyn Niemeier’s son, William and Sophie’s grandson, and that my mom and I were hoping to pay a visit to her childhood home.

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