Martin, Man 1959–

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Martin, Man 1959–

PERSONAL:

Born May 20, 1959, in Ocala, FL; married; wife's name Nancy; children: Catherine, Spencer (daughter). Education: Attended Kennesaw State University; Georgia State University, Ph.D., 2007. Hobbies and other interests: Gardening, baking.

ADDRESSES:

Home—Atlanta, GA. E-mail—[email protected]

CAREER:

Writer and teacher. Stephenson High School, Stone Mountain, GA, English teacher and debate coach. Author and illustrator, ‘Sibling Revelry’ comic strip.

WRITINGS:

Days of the Endless Corvette (novel), Carroll & Graf Publishers (New York, NY), 2007.

Work has appeared in periodicals, including the Kenyon Review, McSweeney's Online, Atlanta Magazine, and others.

SIDELIGHTS:

The author and illustrator of the syndicated comic strip ‘Sibling Revelry’ for seven years, Man Martin has contributed to several literary magazines, including the Kenyon Review, McSweeney's Online, and Atlanta Magazine. His debut novel, Days of the Endless Corvette, is set in the fictional locale of Humble County, Georgia—a region much like the central Georgia countryside where Martin grew up after moving with his family from his native Ocala, Florida. Narrated by the town of Deepstep's librarian, the novel tells the story of protagonist Earl Mulvaney, a lovable misfit with mechanical talent in love with the girl next door, Ellen. When Ellen finds herself pregnant by her previous boyfriend and gets married, her nascent romance with Earl is thwarted and the gawky boy gets a job at a used-car dealership. His boss encourages Earl in his dream of making a new car out of the rusted 1953 Corvette on the premises. Earl notices that, whenever he fixes something, there are always parts left over—which seem to be extra, since his repair jobs work without a hitch. In time, he develops a theory: if he takes the old Corvette apart often enough, he will eventually get enough extra parts to build a whole new one. At the same time, his love for Ellen endures, though he must content himself with daydreams, memories, and occasional notes that they pass to each other in books borrowed from the library.

A reviewer for the Augusta Magazine Web site described Earl's life as one ‘defined by a series of unfair blows and unmerited meanness—and yet a life in which he maintains an endearing kindness and adaptability.’ Though its narration unfolds slowly, the critic observed, Days of the Endless Corvette takes on some epic qualities as its story develops. A contributor to Publishers Weekly also noted the book's leisurely pace, which the critic felt gives the novel ‘magic and meaning.’ Noting that the book's folksy exaggerations make the characters' idiosyncrasies ‘endearing rather than forced,’ the reviewer found Days of the Endless Corvette ‘a grand if meandering charmer.’ St. John Flynn, host of National Public Radio's (NPR) book program ‘Cover to Cover,’ recommended the novel as ‘celebration of small-town life,’ concluding that Martin demonstrates a wonderful talent for crafting an engaging story ‘out of what he terms … ‘moon mist and wood smoke.’"

Martin, who earned a Ph.D. in creative writing from Georgia State University in 2007, teaches English and coaches debate at Stephenson High School in Stone Mountain, a suburb of Atlanta. He lives in that city with his wife.

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

PERIODICALS

Publishers Weekly, April 30, 2007, review of Days of the Endless Corvette, p. 137.

ONLINE

Augusta Magazine,http://magazine.augusta.com/ (November 3, 2007), review of Days of the Endless Corvette.

Man Martin Home Page,http://www.manmartin.net (November 3, 2007).

National Public Radio,http://www.npr.org/ (November 3, 2007), ‘Cover to Cover,’ St. John Flynn, review of Days of the Endless Corvette.

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