Oronte

John Griswold, who uses the pen name Oronte Churm at Inside Higher Ed and elsewhere, was born in Vietnam and raised in coal country in Southern Illinois. His stories, poems, and essays have appeared in War, Literature and the Arts; Brevity; Natural Bridge;  and Ninth Letter. His work has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize, listed as notable in The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2009, and included in The Best Creative Nonfiction, Vol. 3 (WW Norton).

His most recent book is a collection of essays, Pirates You Don't Know, and Other Adventures in the Examined Life (University of Georgia Press 2014). He is also the author of a novel, A Democracy of Ghosts, and a nonfiction book, Herrin: The Brief History of an Infamous American City.

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Most Recent Articles

September 19, 2008
We went to a lecture last night by Leonard S. Marcus, author, critic, and children’s book historian, who’d told a group in an earlier session with quiet amusement that “independent scholar” finally offered a title for what he’d been doing all along. His books include a biography of Margaret Wise Brown (author of Goodnight Moon) and most recently Minders of Make-Believe: Idealists, Entrepreneurs, and the Shaping of American Children's Literature.
September 17, 2008
I have something in the new issue of Brevity, the premiere online journal of concise literary nonfiction, if you're interested.
September 12, 2008
The fall semester was only two weeks old, and we’d already worked through Irving, Hawthorne, and Poe. But my students and I didn’t know each other well yet, and I was aware when I assigned Melville’s “Bartleby, the Scrivener: A Story of Wall Street” that the add/drop date hadn’t passed.
September 9, 2008
The Large Hadron Collider at CERN will fire up Wednesday morning, though “it might take a month or two to ramp up the proton energies to five trillion electron v
September 3, 2008
Have you had the experience recently of your physician turning her computer screen toward you and googling something she needs to know? I have, twice in a month, and I have to say, it was a little disconcerting.
August 29, 2008
Saw a flyer yesterday on a bulletin board in the English Building:CHECK US OUT THIS THURSDAY!!!FREE FOOD!BAGS!M16 SIMULATOR!AND MORE!!!I needed to know what more Army ROTC could possibly provide, so I force-marched over to take a look. In the small grassy space west of the Armory, about 50 students in blue-and orange ROTC t-shirts and shorts were chatting, playing bean-bag toss, and trying to get a grill going. Rock music played loudly from an unseen stereo in an Armory window.
August 28, 2008
Crazy Larry, always hungry for acting roles, sent me an ad he found on Craig’s List:
August 21, 2008
Our friend Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin says there are three kinds of exhaustion: “Exhaustion caused by muscular fatigue, exhaustion caused by overtaxing the brain, and exhaustion caused by amorous excess.”
August 20, 2008
I have a new dispatch up at McSweeney's today, in which I prove myself to be the monster that so many have always thought I was.
August 14, 2008
My family and I are back from our trip, and I’m ready to get back to work. While we were in West Virginia, if we wanted to check e-mail we had to drive up to Snowshoe Ski Resort and use the wireless at the Starbucks.

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