On James Franco trying to be a writer.

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Essays

A friend of mine showed me this Esquire posting of James Franco’s writing: http://www.esquire.com/fiction/james-franco-fiction-0410 and I just want to take a moment to point out a few things about this piece.

My window is cracked, just a bit, and the air plays on my forehead like a cold whisper.

Now, let’s look at some facts here. James Franco graduated from UCLA in 2008 with a degree in English (he took some time off to try his hand at acting). He is currently working on an MFA at Columbia, and is 31 years old. He isn’t a teenager. He is a college graduate and grad student, and this is in his so-called wheelhouse. Am I missing something, or is this absolutely awful? Hilariously awful, even?

Here’s another gem: 

I often think about driving off the side of freeway overpasses, just plunge Grandpa’s old blue boat through the cement guardrail: The sculpted barrier crumbling about me and Grandpa’s blue machine; a great moment of metallic explosion and heavy ripping and jerking and then release; a soft, slow dive of arcing color through the windshield, into a hard second of impact, just before the black

If he used more inappropriate punctuation, didn’t use phrases like “slow dive of arcing color through the windshield,” and stayed in the same tense during that SENTENCE, I would be more willing to give him some credit. Now I’m not Hemingway, at all. But I didn’t study English or creative writing in college, or in my prestigious MFA program, or at Tisch. And to top it off, he’s about to start the PhD program in English at Yale. First of all, dude you’re famous and have a perfectly fine career. Why change? And why change to something that you’re terrible at, too? And second of all, seriously Yale? Is it just because he’s famous?

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