Nothing has happened : a novel in stories ; &, Precious feather : a screenplay
MetadataShow full item record
"Nothing Has Happened" is a book of eight chapters, four fictional and four nonfictional. The narrator remains the same for both the fiction and the non-fiction. He is essentially myself, or a prose-speaking version of myself. Taken together, the chapters tell the story of five or six years of his life, spent driving around in North America in his first car, a green 1982 Toyota Corolla station wagon, trying to teach himself how to become a journalist. He searches in vain for the bones of Ambrose Bierce near Marfa, Texas; he wins third prize at an amateur poetry convention in Reno; he moves to Mexico and botches a story for the New York Times. As the book proceeds, questions begin to arise: Has any of this happpened? Where does the truth lie? Who is Jake Silverstein? It ends with an account of car race in Mexico that celebrates the nation’s first cross-country highway. Highways have played an important role throughout the book, and with the image of this Mexican road the journey finally ends. "Precious Feather" is adapted from a story in the above collection. In the screen version, the protagonist, Blake, is the son of the U.S. Poet Laureate. When he sees an advertisement for an amateur poetry convention in Reno with a $25,000 top prize, he steals one of his father's poems and enters it in the contest. Unbeknownst to Blake, the poem details an embarrassing "moment of imtimacy" between the Laureate and the President at a recent White House dinner. Presidential aides are determined to recover the poem, but Blake needs to win the $25,000 to pay off the violent bookies that are hounding his tail. When they all converge in Reno at the Famous Poets Society’s annual convention, it's a recipe for laughs.