I’ve long had an obsession with big books — reading them and/or attempting to read them over many months and sometimes years. This began when I was fifteen and tried and failed to read The Sound and the Fury, resulting in nothing but confusion and annoyance at Mr. Faulkner. While I gave up on S&F, I continued on with Middlemarch, Bleak House, Gravity’s Rainbow, Infinite Jest, many other Faulkner books, and, of course, the “Moby Dick project” of 1997-2011.

Something about these big books with their heft makes me feel like I am accomplishing something just at the attempt. And that my  brain, in fact, is not atrophying as I creep into middle-age.  However, after the never ending task of Moby Dick, almost mirrored by the search for the great white whale itself, I decided I would need help with Ulysses.

I found this help in the form of three other intrepid readers. From April through August 2012 we set ourselves the task of reading, episode by episode, the monster of all masterpieces that is Ulysses.

I began chronicling my own Odyssey here in blog-form, in a slight-stream-of-consciousness fashion that I like to think Joyce would have appreciated. The blog unlike the book is not yet finished as it has spawned a larger non-digital project, a forthcoming “biblio-memoir” (I’m informed this is an actual sub-genre), Looking for Leopold.

Stay tuned.


3 thoughts on “About

  1. emilymullaswilson says:

    Hi! I don’t know if you still update this blog, but my friend Julia and I just started reading Ulysses, and we’re trying to support each other through the process. It is the hardest novel I’ve ever read. I’m enjoying reading your blog (your explanation of the “Parable of the Plums” in the Aeoleus episode was helpful), and if you know of additional resources, I’d be grateful to hear of them!

    • Hi Emily — are you still at it? I finished Ulysses sometime ago but never the blog… started a new job and got distracted. I really loved Ulysses however and find myself re-reading portions of it ever since I stopped reading. So funny and so much in it (though a bit crazy-making at times!). One book that was given to me after I finished gave me tons of insight into it — Declan Kiberd’s “Ulysses and Us“. Also while I was reading sometimes listened to Frank Delaney’s podcast to get into the spirit of things. Let me know how it is going!

      • emilymullaswilson says:

        Thank you for the advice! Those both look like excellent resources. Yes, I’m still making steady progress through the book, although it’s on hold right now as I finish up the semester. My goal is to finish this summer.

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