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Excerpts from a larger collage about friendship, inspiration, the wages of personal creativity in a celebrity culture and the mystery behind the most important artistic collaboration of the 20th century. After Paul McCartney has also been adapted into a cycle of poems and a performance piece that is now in the early stages of production, directed by John Green and starring Robert K. Johansen.
This is the opening from a novel about a certain kind of Chicago baseball. It imagines a championship season for the Chicago Cubs and considers the role of circumstances beyond our control, or luck, in the lives we lead. Begun in San Anselmo, California. I lived near the ocean but missed Lake Michigan.
This novella was written during the winter in Sheridan Beach on the outskirts of Michigan City, Indiana. We lived in a small blue house overlooking Lake Michigan. In those parts, in those days, the beach was considered the wrong side of town. Now it's a haven for rich Chicagoans.
These stories are set in and around Indiana Dunes country, the deeply conflicted, barely known and extraordinarily beautiful stretch along the base of Lake Michigan. They were written in the mid 1980s, but the terrain covered is still pretty much the same.
Praise for David Hoppe's fiction
"David Hoppe has staked a claim on a specific American location - Lakeshore
territory - and has populated his work with unique and indigenous characters, but
these are timeless stories told with equal parts of rigorous discipline and
"David Hoppe's stories in Local History catch the exuberance of being one's own man inside
our social straight jackets: a father and son juggling opposite hopes, a Cadillac-sized boast
that turns into a love affair, the habits and habitats of loud neighbors, and other of his
fictive situations all are recognizable and left, by writer and reader, with empathy, and
care. a tender story teller of stories that are often fun to read."
"David Hoppe's skein of short stories is a tautly woven, tightly patterned achievement - a
firstrate debut. His characters drift through the dunes and everywhere the glint of menace,
gleam of love irradiates the landscape. A tone-perfect ear and a noticing eye help Hoppe act
as guide; may many readers follow where he leads."
"David Hoppe's short story collection Local History is not just filled with the rich
specifics of place and the piquant individuality of characters, but with a governing
sensibility that creates its own territorial claims: here is a small part of the world
seen thoughtfully and thoroughly, observed with humor and rue, and transmitted to the
reader with calibrated intensity and steady urgency. All the stories are engrossing:
many are mesmerizing. Local History is a remarkable debut."