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Annie Proulx (born August 22, 1935)

Edna Annie Proulx (born August 22, 1935) is an American journalist and author. She has written most frequently as Annie Proulx but has also used the names E. Annie Proulx and E.A. Proulx.

Her second novel, The Shipping News (1993), won both the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and the U.S. National Book Award for Fiction and was adapted as a 2001 film of the same name. Her short story Brokeback Mountain was adapted as an Academy Award, BAFTA and Golden Globe Award-winning major motion picture released in 2005. She won the PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction for her first novel, Postcards.

Proulx (born Edna Ann Proulx, her first name honoring one of her mother's aunts), was born in Norwich, Connecticut, to parents of English and French-Canadian ancestry. Her maternal forebears came to America fifteen years after the Mayflower in 1635. She graduated from Deering High School in Portland, Maine, then attended Colby College "for a short period in the 1950s", where she met her first husband H. Ridgely Bullock, Jr. She later returned to college, studying at the University of Vermont from 1966 to 1969, and graduated cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa with a Bachelor of Arts in History in 1969. She earned her Master of Arts from Sir George Williams University (now Concordia University) in Montreal, Quebec in 1973 and pursued, but did not complete, her PhD.

Proulx lived for more than thirty years in Vermont, has married and divorced three times, and has three sons and a daughter (named Jonathan, Gillis, Morgan, and Sylvia, a.k.a. "Muffy"). In 1994, she moved to Saratoga, Wyoming, where she currently resides, spending part of the year in northern Newfoundland on a small cove adjacent to L'Anse aux Meadows.

Proulx has four sisters: twins Joyce and Janet, who live in Louisiana and Florida respectively; Roberta, of Fairlee, Vermont, and Jude, another writer who lives in Wales.

Starting as a journalist, her first published work of fiction is thought to be "The Customs Lounge", a science fiction story published in the September 1963 issue of If, under the byline "E.A. Proulx". Another contender, probably earlier, was a science fiction story called "All the Pretty Little Horses", which appeared in teen magazine "Seventeen" possibly a year or two before this. She subsequently published stories in Esquire magazine and Gray's Sporting Journal in the late 1970s, eventually publishing her first collection in 1988 and her first novel in 1992. Subsequently, she was awarded NEA (in 1992) and Guggenheim (in 1993) fellowships.

A few years after receiving much attention for The Shipping News, she had the following comment on her celebrity status:
It's not good for one's view of human nature, that's for sure. You begin to see, when invitations are coming from festivals and colleges to come read (for an hour for a hefty sum of money), that the institutions are head-hunting for trophy writers. Most don't particularly care about your writing or what you're trying to say. You're there as a human object, one that has won a prize. It gives you a very odd, ginger kind of sensation.
In 1997, Annie Proulx was awarded the Dos Passos Prize. Proulx has twice won the O. Henry Prize for the year's best short story. In 1998, she won for "Brokeback Mountain," which had appeared in The New Yorker on October 13, 1997. Proulx won again the following year for "The Mud Below," which appeared in The New Yorker June 22 and 29, 1999. Both appear in her 1999 collection of short stories, Close Range: Wyoming Stories. The lead story in this collection, entitled "The Half-Skinned Steer," was selected by author Garrison Keillor for inclusion in The Best American Short Stories 1998, (Proulx herself edited the 1997 edition of this series) and later by novelist John Updike for inclusion in The Best American Short Stories of the Century (1999). In 2001 Proulx was one of the writers heavily criticized by Brian Reynolds Myers in his polemical work A Reader's Manifesto.

Brokeback Mountain (2005), directed by Ang Lee and starring Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal, was based on a story of the same name in Proulx's collection of short stories, Close Range.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Annie_Proulx
"Brokeback Mountain" by Annie Proulx is the one of the most homoerotic story I know and nothing at all like the movie. The writing is strange, truncated and yet incredibly moving and revelatory and achieves that rare quality of matching a compelling story with just as compelling a way of saying that story. --Michael Klein
Ennis del Mar and Jack Twist, two ranch hands, come together when they're working as sheepherder and camp tender one summer on a range above the tree line. At first, sharing an isolated tent, the attraction is casual, inevitable, but something deeper catches them that summer.
Both men work hard, marry, and have kids because that's what cowboys do. But over the course of many years and frequent separations this relationship becomes the most important thing in their lives, and they do anything they can to preserve it.
This short story was one of the most moving stories I had ever read in any genre. The need, love, fear, hope and despair of these two men was palpable. I can honestly say I found it haunting long after I finish it.
In a kind of reverse inspiration it also strengthened my need to write happy endings, to not only give my characters real life obstacles to overcome but to grant them that goal of love and a lasting, shared relationship. I don't agree with any romances that insist on letting the harsher elements of RL dictate a uncertain happy ending. If readers wanted RL they would read the newspaper or literature, not romance. I believe in giving a reader what I believe they read romance for – that heartwarming, feel good satisfaction at the end of an enjoyable journey of the heart. --Laura Baumbach
When I first started reading Brokeback Mountain, I realized I’d have to slow down, as it seemed to be written in a dialect of English with which I was totally unfamiliar. Unfamiliar territory, indeed, and so authentically wrought western talk. I think the story sneaks up on you. Like so many Americans I probably have a fascination with the West, its promises as well as its dangers. In my case, it’s also my native yet adopted part of the country, though California could be put in another category entirely. I believe the rural parts of my state and Wyoming have more in common than California’s coastal cities have with its interior. Here was a genuine rendering of love between two men, which is so rare in art that when it finally appears it’s really quite astounding and in this particular case, broke my heart. --Jim Arnold
I read a reprint of Brokeback Mountain in the New Yorker while at the gym one day. And while perspiring profusely on the eliptical machine (“…the motel room smelled of sweat and semen…”) I was captivated, stunned and depressed—not only because of the story’s pathos, but also for the realization that I will never attain, as a writer, that perfectly-pitched voice with which Ms. Proulx’s writing sings. --Nick Nolan
I fell in love with Brokeback Mountain when it was still available on-line in the Washington Post archives. It hit me in the gut. I actually belong to a Brokeback Mountain fan group, although I don’t post there much any more. Never did fanfiction, the story was just too pure and simple for me to need to go beyond it. Although we had Friday Haiku days which I joined in on and I actually wrote poetry inspired by it. --James Buchanan
When I read Brokeback Mountain years ago, the sparseness of the story just seemed to rip more gaping holes in my already aching heart! For such a short story it tells such a huge tale of regret and love lost. Just like the best special effects in a movie are the ones you don’t even know are there, in this book it’s the dialogue that is never said, the intentions that are never acted upon, and the words that only seem to exist between the lines that make this such a haunting, impactful, heart-wrenching story. --Geoffrey Knight
Further Readings:

Brokeback Mountain by Annie Proulx
Paperback: 64 pages
Publisher: Scribner; First Edition edition (December 2, 2005)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0743271327
ISBN-13: 978-0743271325
Amazon: Brokeback Mountain
Amazon Kindle: Brokeback Mountain

Annie Proulx has written some of the most original and brilliant short stories in contemporary literature, and for many readers and reviewers, "Brokeback Mountain" is her masterpiece.
Ennis del Mar and Jack Twist, two ranch hands, come together when they're working as sheepherder and camp tender one summer on a range above the tree line. At first, sharing an isolated tent, the attraction is casual, inevitable, but something deeper catches them that summer.

Both men work hard, marry, and have kids because that's what cowboys do. But over the course of many years and frequent separations this relationship becomes the most important thing in their lives, and they do anything they can to preserve it.
The New Yorker won the National Magazine Award for Fiction for its publication of "Brokeback Mountain," and the story was included in Prize Stories 1998: The O. Henry Awards. In gorgeous and haunting prose, Proulx limns the difficult, dangerous affair between two cowboys that survives everything but the world's violent intolerance.

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Tags: author: annie proulx, eminent outlaws, gay classics, persistent voices
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