Yes, the road.

Yes, the road.
Eagle Nest, New Mexico. “People like to drive because driving is actually and symbolically an almost perfect mechanism for escape…there is probably no human being who does not have troubles, real or imagined, from which he at times feels the need to flee.” George R. Stewart.


My photo
Brooklin, Maine, United States
We own a 1975 GMC Sierra Grande 15 in Maine and a 1986 Chevrolet Custom Deluxe 10 in West Texas. Also a pair of 1997 Volvo 850 wagons. Average age in the fleet is 28 years--we're recycling. I've published 3 novels: THE LAW OF DREAMS (2006), THE O'BRIENS (2012), and CARRY ME (2016). Also 2 short story collections: NIGHT DRIVING(1987) and TRAVELLING LIGHT (2013). More of my literary life is at I was a Fellow at the Netherlands Institute for Advanced Study for 2012-13. I'm an adjunct professor at Colorado College and in the MFA program at Queens University of Charlotte. In 2015-16 I was a Fellow at Harvard University's Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study. The Autoliterate office is in Car Talk Plaza in Harvard Square, 2 floors above Dewey Cheatem & Howe. SUBSCRIBE TO THE AUTOLITERATE DAILY EMAIL by hitting the button to the right.

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Twin I-Beam 1966 Ford F100

The first Autoliterate post that I received via text. My phone didn't recognize the number but it came from somewhere in the State of Maine.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Scout launched

Glad to report Scout was launched by Bill Grant at Sedgwick Town Landing on Monday June 27 on the high tide @ 4pm. It was a crazy blowy day: blue sky and blowing SW coming around to S with gusts that felt to me like 30 knots. The Town Landing is up Benjamin River from Eggemoggin Reach and normally a protected anchorage but when a southerly is blowing strong it does get wild up there, and there were white horses on the Benjamin R. yesterday. We slipped in without incident. She's on a morning there now and I plan to motor up to Center Harbor tomorrow, tune the rigging and bend the sails.

1946 Ford F1 in The Great Race

photo ©Michael Taylor2016
from Michael Taylor:
"Details: The Great Race, put on by Hemmings Motor News and presented by
Hagerty Insurance, is a 2,400-mile rally that started Saturday morning (June
18) in downtown San Rafael, Calif., and will end up Sunday night (June 26)
in Moline, Ill. Along the way, the cars and trucks entered in the race will
occasionally follow the Lincoln Highway. The race program showed 137
vehicles entered for the event. Hopefully, they'll also have a chase truck
or two, the better to have on hand fanbelts for cars that are 70 or 80 years
old, as well as water pumps, generators, spare tires and the like..."

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

1949 Ford F1 in the other Brookl(y)n

The truck was spotted in Bushwick by Isabelle Chapman. I like this edition of Ford F1 in any language & have posted them everywhere from West Texas to Nova Scotia, 
Isabelle has translated three of my novels so far. The French translations mean more to me than any other because I can read French, so I know how great Isabelle's work is, and what a powerfully creative endeavor literary translation can be. Carry Me, my third novel, came out in US & Canada this spring (you can get signed US First editions at Blue Hill Books or Betsy's Sunflower; signed Canadian firsts at Paragraphe Bookstore (Montreal) or Ben McNally Books (Toronto)). Isabelle's translation will appear in 2017-- published in Paris by Editions Philippe-Rey, et á Montreal par Editions XYZ.

from La Loi des Reves review in Le Figaro
"...Peter Behrens parvient, jusqu'au bout, à garder le même souffle, le même lyrisme incantatoire, et à faire partager sa compassion et son respect pour un héros qui, endurci par les épreuves, finit par devenir un homme. Sans illusions, mais toujours déterminé.La Loi des rêves de Peter Behrens traduit de l'anglais par Isabelle Chapman" (buy it here)

from Les O'Brien review in Cafe-Powell
"...Nous faisant voyager de la Californie à New York, en passant par Montreal, Les O’Brien est un roman jubilatoire comme on en voit peu : Joe O’Brien, la figure majeure du récit, est un personnage complexe, en apparence fort, ambitieux et travailleur, en réalité profondément marqué par son passé misérable. Toute sa vie, il aura quelque chose à prouver. Il n’arrivera jamais à passer outre les failles profondes qu’ont laissé son enfance, incarnées par le personnage de Mike, son beau-père alcoolique et lubrique, qu’il battit comme plâtre quand il apprit qu’il tripotait ses jeunes sœurs. Le souvenir de ce violoniste obsessionnel, qui pouvait jouer des jours durant, sera diabolisé avec le temps, symbolisant toute la misère et la violence de l’enfance de Joe dans le Pontiac. Joe, presque volontairement, deviendra à son tour alcoolique, mettant alors en péril sa famille.
Les O’Brien est un roman fleuve d’une rare intensité. On le quitte un peu triste, comme lorsque l’on laisse des amis qu’on sait ne jamais revoir." (buy it here)
From Dennis Bock's review of Carry Me in New York Times Book Review  "...Behrens captures his narrator’s naïveté and the casual anti-Semitism of the times with great skill and intelligence . . . as true an observation about human nature as there is."

Monday, June 27, 2016

1953 Plymouth Suburban

The car spends its week at the Brooklin Boatyard. We caught it a couple of years ago, wearing primer. There was a feature on these 2- door wagons in a recent Hemmings Classic Car. 

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Saskatchewan Roadster

from our man on the prairie, Alex Emond:  "Here is a good looking little car. I was passing through Maple Creek , Saskatchewan when I saw this. It appears to be complete , finished except for paint. He can stop right now, if he wants, and not paint it. I kind of like the way it looks as is . 
    Here is a shot of a different kind of horse power . These beauties were in the Frenchman River Valley west of Val Marie .   Cheers , Alex

Thursday, June 23, 2016

5-Window Chevy. Alturas, California

Thanks to Michael Moore for this one. Cars just aren't done so well on the East Coast. That California car will survive the driverless era, right?

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

HP2 Plymouth Belvedere

 Plymouth people could tell me the year; I'm guessing 1966. The car was for sale at Motorland in Arundel, Maine. The lightweight plain-jane stripper with serious power for Racing in the Street.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Dodge Power Wagon

We were heading Downeast out of Cambridge in a  2016 Ram ProMaster Cargo van with all out stuff aboard. I liked that van, it was roomy and surprisingly nimble, and the driver's position is perched up high. Definitely a Euro-type van; it's sold in Europe as the Fiat Ducato. Stopped for coffee at the Kennebunk Service plaza and saw this earlier version of Dodge truckdom. I'm guessing mid-80's, a good looking truck. There weren't that many crewcabs around then; when I worked a (trail)crew in the Canadian Rockies (we just called them "the Rockies"), we rode out back with the shovels and wheelbarrows and rock drills, which was chilly by late October, way out there in Four Strong Winds country.

Citroën 2CV6 on the Big Island

Colin Washburn spotted the CItroën at Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park, on the Big Island.

Monday, June 20, 2016

1964 Chevrolet C10, caged. Marfa

Erik Baier saw this backyard dog in Marfa. I know the truck and a few years ago wanted to buy it but something Marfa-esque happened. Or more likely, this being Marfa, didn't happen. I never could find or talk to the owner, or something. As a Marfan friend of our's said, "Mañana does not mean tomorrow; it just means not today." One of our trucks had the same ironwork antelope grill; I think a lot of these were done in shop classes at Marfa High School.

Sunday, June 19, 2016

1959 Mercedes 220s

Saw the car in North Cambridge, Mass. There was a lot of grey paint in Germany in those years.

Saturday, June 18, 2016

1966 VW bus, Cambridge

Saw the bus up near Fresh Pond in Cambridge.