Tuesday, January 1, 2013

column @ Vice

a weekly series of posts on books and shit

(163) Actually, The Great Gatsby is Trash
(162) This Bike Poet Delivers Dreams to Your Doorstep
(161) The 22 Best Books I Read in 2016
(160) Three Beach Reads To Make Your Summer Less Boring and Alone
(159) Being a Professional 'Hearthstone' Gamer Is Harder Than It Looks
(158) These Short Films Will Self Destruct After You Watch Them
(157) The Familiar Would Like To Be Less Familiar Than It Actually Is
(156) Brian Evenson's Writing is as Brutal as it is Beautiful
(155) Throwing Confetti in Death's Face with Derek McCormack
(154) The Hallucinatory Terror of Unica Zürn
(153) Three Books Blurring the Borders of Memory and Reality
(152) John Keene's 'Counternarratives' Rewires History With Imagination
(151) Heather Christle's 'Heliopause' Disintegrates Reality
(150) 'Aqua Teen Hunger Force Forever' is the End of an Era
(149) People Who Died Trying To Set World Records
(148) Three Short, Savage Books You Have To Read
(147) Underappreciated Masterpieces: Why Did I Ever (2001)
(146) Andrew James Weatherhead Proves You Don't Have To Share Every Single Thing That Comes Into Your Mind
(145) Finding Love with Asperger's
(144) Ubu Publishes the Unpublishable
(143) This Novel Is Made Entirely of Terrifying GIFs
(142) The Unexpected Favorite Films of Your Favorite Celebrities
(141) Food is a Private Hell, Love is a Private Hell
(140) Have You Ever Dreamed of 'This Man'?
(139) All the Books I Read in 2014
(138) We Live In Hiromi Ito's Wasteland
(137) A Roller Coaster Designed To Kill People
(136) A Written Museum of Murder, Suicide, and Revelation in Baltimore
(135) The Top 10 Worst Beatles Songs
(134) Six Uniquely Terrifying Books for Halloween
(133) Talking Video Games and Ghosts with John Darnielle
(132) Yannick Murphy Puts You In The Mind of a Serial Killer
(131) Grandiose Predictions for the 2014-15 NFL Season
(130) Geographic North Redefines Space
(129) Love in the Time of Xanax and Nokia
(128) Thirty Years of Dalkey Archive Press
(127) The Bizarre and Terrifying Propaganda Art of the Children of God
(126) Sprezzatura Basically Means You're Chill but You Give a Shit
(125) Underappreciated Masterpieces: J.G. Ballard's High-Rise
(124) Why Do So Many Soft Drinks Taste Like Teletubby Blood?
(123) Summer Reading List: Zombie Hordes, Snuff Films, Haunted Computers
(122) The 2015 NBA All-Star Flop Challenge
(121) M. Geddes Gengras Makes Electronic Music for the Last Wild Indian
(120) How Many Crystals Do You Have Left Inside You?
(119) America Needs Alzheimer's Funding Now
(118) Joe Wenderoth Cannot Be Vanquished
(117) Underappreciated Masterpieces: Javier Marías's Dark Back of Time
(116) Are Blake Griffin's Kia Commercials Psychic Warfare?
(115) Some Books Can Watch You Read Them
(114) Owning Porno Used To Mean Something, Damnit
(113) If I Can't Be Brain Damaged I Don't Want To Read
(112) Anyone Who Isn't Dead is a Witch
(111) It's Time to Rethink the Crime Genre
(110) Hill William Sings Ghost Country
(109) American Art Needs More Holes
(108) An Interview with Richard Garfield, Creator of Magic: The Gathering
(107) Future Harper's Index of America
(106) The Uncanny Puzzles of Jesse Ball
(105) Whoops, I Like Pro Football
(104) Sci-Fi Doesn't Have To Be Dominated by Horny Bro Wizards
(103) What Is This Terror Before Me: A Review of the New Taco Bell Grilled Stuft Nacho
(102) Brief Reviews of Every Movie I Saw in 2013
(101) All the Books I Read in 2013
(100) I Have Voluntary Tourette's (and am insane)
(99) Portrait of the Marquis de Sade as a Young Female Hacker
(98) Books I Gave Up On Reading
(97) Reviews of Churches That Won't Stop Growing
(96) Implausible Literary Halloween Costumes No One Will Recognize
(95) Learning How To Haunt Yourself
(94) The Many False Floors of Harry Mathews
(93) Everyone is a Plagiarist
(92) Thirteen Alternate Endings for Breaking Bad
(91) Burning Bodies and Playing Dead with Jeff Jackson
(90) What Celebrities Eat at Golden Corral
(89) If You Build the Code, Your Computer Will Write the Novel
(88) Windows That Lead To More Windows: An Interview With Gary Lutz
(87) The Permutating Brain of Stephen Dixon
(86) What I Remember from Getting an MFA in Creative Writing
(85) Holes and Bodies and Secrets and Skin and Death
(84) Rachel Glaser's Hypercolor Multitude of Moods
(83) Fatty XXL Meets The Little Mermaid High on X & Texting
(82) I Hate Myself And Want To Die: A Review of the New Wendy's Pretzel Burger
(81) The Beatles are Dead, Fassbinder is Alive
(80) All My Favorite Narrators Are Women
(79) Inside the Mind of a Female Pedophile
(78) Conceptual Writing, Gender, Murder, & Bob Seger
(77) "Happy Rock" by Matthew Simmons, a One-Man Black Metal Band
(76) What Are These Freaks Reading?
(75) The Miami Heat Reader
(74) Fence's 15 Years of Reconfiguring the Literary Landscape
(73) Please Start Banning Books Again
(72) Suck on the Monolith
(71) Anton Chekhov versus Jeffrey Dahmer
(70) Sarcophagi of Prisoners Covered in Cocaine
(69) Tupac, Neck Braces, and Suicide: An Interview with Harmony Korine
(68) The Unrelenting Novels of Thomas Bernhard
(67) Shapes That Make You Dizzy
(66) 100 Literary Rumors
(65) March Madness of Fast Food
(64) Scott McClanahan's Animal Magnetism
(63) The Day in the Life of an Alzheimer's Caregiver
(62) Sergio De La Pava's Narrative Mutations
(61) The Disorienting Novels of Kobo Abe
(60) Social Work in the Tenderloin Will Kill Something Inside You
(59) Tim Hecker Builds Mountains With Sound
(58) What is Obscene?
(57) Crude Drawings of Hot Scenes from Literature
(56) Anne Carson vs. George Saunders
(55) The Jim Jones of Poetry
(54) How Will the David Foster Wallace Legacy Survive Itself? 
(53) Brief Reviews of Every Movie I Saw In Theaters in 2012
(52) Men Are Victims of Workplace Sexual Harassment, Too
(51) All the Books I Read in 2012
(50) Verbal Paintings of Cartoon Dogs Sexting
(49) Considering Roberto Bolaño and 'Woes of the True Policeman'
(48) My Greatest Performances in Binge Eating
(47) Just because you're bored doesn't mean you have to be a surrealist
(46) Who is Zachary German?
(45) The Dark Logic of Clarice Lispector
(44) Messed Up Books To Read While Wearing A Mask
(43) I asked my dad, who has dementia, to annotate Jonathan Franzen's How To Be Alone
(42) I don't want to read any more books about straight white people having sex
(41) Dorothea Lasky's Wild-Ass Shout-Brain
(40) Michael Chabon's Dream Journal
(39) Michael Kimball's Enormous Death-Eye
(38) A Chat With David Byrne About 'How Music Works'
(37) Emily Dickinson was So Horny and Ready to Die
(36) Pimp C and Raisin Bran Crunch are Inextricable Parts of Reality
(35) The Putrid Voyeurisms of Peter Sotos
(34) The Juggalo Summer Reading List
(33) Fifty Shades of Chick-Fil-A: My Polyamorous Chick-Fil-A Fan Porn
(32) Shane Jones's Fantasies Shit On The 'Real World'
(31) Books About Death By People Who Committed Suicide
(30) Masturbating Over Ghosts
(29) Literary Mailbag: Books Reading Writing Literature Fiction Poetry Dogs Horses Money Gossip Arby's Don DeLillo
(28) I Watched The Holy Mountain With My Mom
(27) FC2's Forty Years of Brainbending
(26) All Advice Is Bad
(25) Diane Williams's Sticky Secrets
(24) Books People Wrote Because They Were Pissed About Writing
(23) Snow On Tha Bluff
(22) Making Up Bands in Your Brain While High
(21) Three Thin Weird Good Books About Sex And Power
(20) Famous Authors' Thoughts While Being Photographed
(19) Books with Blurbs by Bono, Thomas Kinkade, and Tyler Perry
(18) Cormac McCarthy vs. Three 6 Mafia
(17) How To Write a Novel About Murdering Nazis
(16) Thinking about Suicide in the Breakroom
(15) Beautiful Gross People on Notebook Paper
(14) Cleverbot on Contemporary Literature, Dating, and God
(13) Get Your MFA From L. Ron Hubbard
(12) Here Is a Book That Wrote Itself
(11) The Tiny Massive Lardfields of Aase Berg
(10) The Top Ten Most Frequently Played Songs on Several Famous Authors' iTunes
(9) The English Language Needs a New Dad
(8) Reconsidering Perec's Library
(7) "The Shining 2 by Jonathan Franzen" by Stephen King
(6) I Talked Books to Bros on Chatroulette
(5) Nikanor Teratologen's Rolodex of Atrocities
(4) Selected Unread Books I've Had On My Self For 5+ Years and Why I Haven't Read Them yet And/Or What I Think They Might Be About
(3) Injecting Mercury
(2) The Multiplying Hells of Pierre Guyotat
(1) All Language Is Murder

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Sky Saw is released today

Books that reappear when you destroy them, lampshades made of skin, people named with numbers and who can’t recall each other, a Universal Ceiling constructed by an otherwise faceless authority, a stairwell stuffed with birds: the terrain and populace of SKY SAW is packed with stroboscopic memory mirage. In dynamic sentences and image, Blake Butler crafts a post-Lynchian nightmare where space and family have deformed, leaving the human persons left in the strange wake to struggle after the shapes of both what they loved and who they were.

The klieg-light intensity of Butler's writing intimates that there is something fundamentally terrifying about what each of us does every single night, which is to pitch our minds and bodies into oblivion. — TIME

In an interview published in the winter 2010 issue of the PARIS REVIEW, Jonathan Franzen said to Stephen Burn, "I've never felt less self-consciously preoccupied with language than I did when I was writing FREEDOM. Over and over again, as I was producing chapters, I said to myself, 'This feels nothing like the writing I did for twenty years—this just feels transparent.'’ Franzen added that this struck him as "a good sign"—an indication that he was "pressing language more completely into the service of providing transparent access to the stories I was telling and to the characters in those stories."
Blake Butler is the opposite of that. — BOOKFORUM

I couldn't tell what was really happening and what wasn't or who it was or wasn't happening too. I really wanted to know if they were dreaming awake talking about themselves or an entity. If you can read this book and understand it than truly you are amazing and can read anything. I must be a daft idiot cause this book made me want to kill it and myself for even trying so hard. — Shree Lafaye Ziller AMAZON.com

Butler is the 21st century answer to William Burroughs. – PUBLISHERS WEEKLY

Saturday, May 5, 2012

a section deleted from Nothing appears at the newly relaunched Fanzine, concerning Joseph Cornell, Heather Christle, Joyelle McSweeney, and James Joyce: Hybrid Locations: Thoughts on Dreaming or Insomnia and Language

Monday, February 6, 2012

Anatomy Courses

Available today from Lazy Fascist, cowritten with Sean Kilpatrick.

Many thanks to Cameron Pierce for releasing this slim strange book I never thought would be released.

More information.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Nothing: A Portrait of Insomnia

My first book of nonfiction came out this week.

Review in Time

Review in New York Times (Editor's Choice)

Review in Creative Loafing

Review/interview at Fanzine

Review in Atlanta Journal & Constitution

Review at Onion A/V Club

Interview in Interview

Radio Interview on The Brian Lehrer Show (WNYC)

Podcast at Other People

* * *

You can get Nothing now at Amazon, SPD, stores, etc.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

i gave my dad some candy

MOM: What do you say when someone gives you something you want?
DAD: I want this.

Monday, October 3, 2011

30 Under 30

i have extra copies of this 30 Under 30 Anthology of younger innovative writers I edited with Lily Hoang, out a month or so ago. if you would like one, paypal $12 to blakebutler [at] gmail [dot] com (shipping included)

"30 Under 30 offers an impressive cross-section of innovative American fiction by young writers. If you're tired of the 'authorized version' and want a sense of where fiction is really going, what its future shapes and forms are likely to be, this is the place to start." - Brian Evenson, author of Fugue State and The Open Curtain.

"Cops in the clouds, a father and daughter’s mythic severing, fictions of spreadsheets, a story ending in future tense. For those young enough still to live in language, words are tangible as slivers, as hard candy in the mouth. These thirty assemble the outlandish, the ecstatic, the wild, and there’s a conviction they can just do this." - R. M. Berry, author of Frank and Dictionary of Modern Anguish

CONTRIBUTORS: Joanna Ruocco » Brian Oliu » Michael J. Lee » Angi Becker Stevens » Shane Jones » Devin Gribbons » Christina Kloess » James Yeh » William Seabrook » Danielle Adair » Megan Milks » Rachel Glaser » Michael Stewart » Sean Kilpatrick » Andrea Kneeland » Zach Dodson » Beth Couture » Mike Young » Kathleen Rooney & Elisa Gabbert » Joshua Cohen » Matt Bell » Adam Good » Andrew Farkas » Jaclyn Dwyer » Ryan Downey » Ryan Call » Kristina Born » Conor Madigan » Rebecca Jean Kraft » Evenlyn Hampton

Thursday, August 11, 2011

what would happen if a private source offered $5 million to 1st American who can convince someone in their family to commit suicide on film

Saturday, July 30, 2011

This story is called wrote a new story today

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Sunday, July 24, 2011

you can now get my book EVER in ebook form for $6 from Calamari Press

Monday, June 27, 2011

In the Heart of the Country by Coetzee is really fantastic

Friday, June 17, 2011

things are gpomg tp get worse arent they

Sunday, June 12, 2011

"There was a wall in him that no one reached. Not even Clara, though she assumed it had deformed him. A tiny stone swallowed years back that had grown with him and which he carried around because he could not shed it. His motive for hiding it had probably extinguished itself years earlier. . . . Patrick and his small unimportant stone. It had entered him at the wrong time in his life. Then it had been a flint of terror. He could have easily turned aside at the age of seven or twenty, and just spat it out and kept on walking, and forgotten it by the next street corner.

"So we are built."