Monday, June 30, 2008


The stellar Kathryn Regina and the other lovely ladies of Venom Literati read & reviewed PIATBVL. That made me feel honored and happy.

They were eating chocolate covered potato chips, which I can't remember ever trying and now I want.

I like & agree with this blog post by Shane Jones.

I got Derek White's new novel MARSUPIAL in the mail today and it may be one of the most beautiful looking book objects I've seen in a long while. BUY IT. It has moved to the top of my reading pile, ever growing. Here's like 1/3 of it, though next I think I want to reread Faulkner.

Also, if you haven't yet, check out MICHAEL KIMBALL WRITES YOUR LIFE STORY ON A POSTCARD, it's pretty insane.

Did anyone in NYC go to the NEW YORK TYRANT 4 release party? I want it.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

I ate the baby with the wettest neck you've ever sniffed I'm going to tell you this one more time some other time from now ok

Help defeat the fucking tornado by buying BRIAN FOLEY's The Tornado is not a Surrealist. It's true, they really aren't.

In related news, my loft is supposedly going to be ready for me to move back into finally on July 4th. It's been 4 months now. We'll see if that date holds true.

KIM CHINQUEE gave props to Publishing Genius and my chapbook. Thank you Kim!

Recently, JEREMY JAMES THOMPSON asked me to annotate a poem by CHARLES BERNSTEIN for a broadside of his poem 'Every True Religion is Bound to Fail,' which was then presented at a reading by Bernstein for the Center for Book Arts Broadside Reading Series. It was also annotated by William Moor, Walter K. Lew, Dillon Westbrook & J.D. Mitchell-Lumsden, and Jeremy hand created a series of 150 numbered, autographed and absolutely beautiful broadsides, in which I appear printed in hot pink.


In the annotations I managed to discuss Orel Hershiser's productive pregnancy-making, Three Six Mafia pancake breakfasts, jacking off in the Georgia Tech library bathroom and other ridiculousness. Thank you Jeremy for inviting me in to such an awesome project.

I want to learn to hand-print things now but I imagine I feel lazy.

Right now reading ATMOSPHERIC DISTURBANCES by Rivka Galchen and I think enjoying it and also reading IT WAS LIKE MY TRYING TO HAVE A TENDER-HEARTED NATURE by Diane Williams and feeling in a melting room or something, which is awesome.

I am going to continue creating this thing to entertain my hard drive now.

This 'novella' or maybe 'novel' thing I am working on, maybe titled HOW MANY FLOORS DOES THE NIGHTMARE HAVE?, it is becoming maybe ridiculous.

Here is a part of a random graph:

The woman had a long black metal chain that ran out from her vulva. The chain led somewhere beyond the bathroom door. The woman continued with her fingers curling hair until her whole head was encased--her cheek skin slumped and slathered with bright white oil that clung to light underneath. Her tits had been removed. In the tub the father burped and nattered, trying to stand up. The nude woman’s neck was stacked with hickeys. Her spinal column seemed disrupted. Her ass, though--her ass had been on sticky paper, replicated through the years. The father nodded. He felt his back arch, his fat toes cracking as they cricked.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Things if you haven't had or have had if you had had he had who had or who huh wha


2. Calamari Press just released Derek White's new novel MARSUPIAL and is also now the proprietor of all 3rd Bed released, including 10 of their 11 issues all their 3 book releases by Gary Lutz, David Ohle & James Wagner.

3. Lamination Colony nominated Josh Maday's Distractus Refractus Ontologicus: The Dissemination of Michael Martone for Best Creative Nonfiction 2008. Get that motherfucker, Josh.

4. An easy way to hallucinate is to not sleep for 2 weeks, drink too much coffee and then immediately go running. This is also a good way to faint into the street and get hit by a car, which I did not do, but could have. This weekend I am getting Lunesta pills. Praise.

5. God damn it I need to remember to go to some local comedy shows, get drunk and heckle the local dads. This guy is major:

Sitting in the front row with my ass hanging out shouting Tupac lyrics and hacking snot bubbles would be king of evening.
Pretty much none of this all matters sorry

Thursday, June 26, 2008

i know exactly what my problem is

At 4:30 am the living room turns in a self-basting oven

I sit in the room with all the bullshit I've spouted in the past 9 months and we have a powwow power meeting

My bullshit is fucking pissed off

Do you understand the term 'host body' as well as 'evictor'?

When I look at the pages of books right now I mostly see dogs fucking goats or goats fucking dogs, I can't keep it straight, and the book won't close

I need to be a little serious maybe

My bullshit powwow power meeting told me to cancel this month's seasonal programming and start takin it for the man

Most of the time the problem is I don't have much of anything to say

I was at dinner last night with some people and just kind of sat there looking back and forth from heads like they were tennis

I just woke up from a dream from 11 am to 1 pm, my main sleep block this day, in which I had a coffee cup that was spurting liquid from it straight up in a heavy plume and I could put my face into it

In the plume there was like all these women working out and I talked to Justin Taylor about titles in his short story collection. Tao Lin was sitting under the table looking haggard and I asked him if he needed something to drink and he said no and I asked him about the reading I knew he had in the dream and he said he didn't want anyone to come to it he didn't want anyone to come and I said I understood and then I let Tao Lin be alone under the table

I know that at least one of the people who googles 'boy erection' and 'lindsay lohans tits' everyday to get here probably has a least a lot of money, Hey, person, if you paypal me and my friends some of that money I will write stories for you about whatever pop culture icon or fictional character you like getting reamed in the ass by a bolt of lava and like dudes power jackin it in time to the beat of your favorite song, no problem, my paypal is blakebutler [at] gmail [dot] com

Of if you want me to teach your kid or college student to write I will show them stories I think are good and then tell them why they are going about it all wrong and so am I

I have 17000 words towards a new novel or novella or something already and most every sentence while I am typing it I am thinking, why that word, why that word, why that word

Why any words

Maybe this will be the novel where I don't stop at 60k words and instead just keep writing until the book is so huge it will be called a brick of self-destructive creation and no one will read it but it will have a fat ass spine and it will weigh people down and make them feel tired

I wish I was a chest of drawers

I will learn to wait in silence

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

i don't know what my problem is

have you been to camp recently? i am going to start a camp, you'll get merit badges and people will show their anuses to a camera while everyone else turns their head

i feel like soon i am going to start talking a lot of shit

maybe just saying that will get it out of me

i can't 'believe' this is happening

i am going to mail myself to some people who are talking about the 'believability' of certain books, they don't want to be forced to not 'believe' what is being said in the book, they want a good reason for the thing that happens in the book to happen, i think its john gardner's fault, 'don't disrupt the narrative dream,' suck me, if i want an undisrupted narrative dream i can watch bill cosby, you will never conquer the undisrupted dream of bill cosby's television program

america's middle school system is responsible for book sales by aleksander hemon and william trevor and the first jonathan safran foer book and something

if you can say something in a book i don't understand i will look at the book

if you are telling me a story i am going to get on youtube and look at videos of people messing up on who wants to be a millionaire or maybe small town people singing trash songs and not knowing the words or accidentally stumbling on videos of the insides of my stomach where the child lives

when are there going to be more hours??




Monday, June 23, 2008

9L / Memorious / Deb Olin Unferth

Ordering info and specs and preview pages of the new issue of NINTH LETTER is live. I have been able to read some of the work in the new issue finally after distracting myself from the beautiful cover. Yes. There is a retrospective article about the design artists discussing their work from previous issues and it is fascinating. Go get 'er.

ALSO: I have a very short thing in the new issue of MEMORIOUS, along with Kristen Iskandrian, Robin Lippincott, Major Jackson, Jessica Murphy, Jordan Windholz and several others. Memorious looks sexy. I don't remember writing the story that I have up there: LANDLORD.

Began another project that may become a novel or novella with the working title HOW MANY FLOORS DOES THE NIGHTMARE HAVE? which I got from someone googling that to find my website the other day. Whoever that was, thanks, what the fuck were you looking for? Email me or something.

DEB OLIN UNFERTH's 'Managing' from MINOR ROBBERIES may be one of my favorite new stories of the past several years.

I had some other shit to say but as usual I can't remember.

One of the worse things about insomnia is when you finally do sleep it feels so new but still usually isn't very satisfying. I went to sleep at 6 am the other day and woke and felt sure I'd finally gotten normal rest until I looked out and saw it was still dark. Maybe I should stop drinking coffee, but then I wouldn't really be able to do anything all day but sit and look. Not that that would be that different.

Somebody cut me on the face.

- - -

EDIT: VICTORY for No Colony.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

DIAGRAM 8.3 All Fiction

It's not up on their front page yet, but the new Summer Fiction Issue of DIAGRAM, featuring the finalists and winner of the 2008 $5 Innovative Fiction Prize, is now live. My favorite thing I think is Amelia Gray's surreal little robotoid text, but everything else is also massive, including Mark Leidner, Debra DiBlasi, Amanda Goldblatt, Sarah Scoles, Kea Wilson and several others. I also have a story THE MANY FORMS OF RAIN ___ SENT UPON US IN THOSE DAYS BEFORE THE LAST DAYS, yet another from Scorch Atlas, which has begun to remove the lining from the roof of my house and is eating all the liquor and can no longer feel its knees. Please enjoy.

This story was an effort to increase awareness about the unfortunate viral possession known as GASHING CAREERISM that by 2020 will have wiped our beaches clean and has in many counties begun to claim certain children here, already, now:

Friday, June 20, 2008

5 Star Literary Stories + OH BABY

LAMINATION COLONY is featured today on Five Star Literary Stories, with a review of Ron Burch's UNFINISHED, one of my favorite stories from back in the archives. Thanks to T.J. Forrester and Jai Clare for the nice write up.

Also, on HOTBOOKS today a brief review of Kim Chinquee's OH BABY.

Thursday, June 19, 2008


Got my contributor copies of the new issue of NINTH LETTER today. I felt lightheaded a little looking at it. It is too nice. It is an object.

I want to paint my apartment those colors with those symbols or something.

As always the issue includes some incredible work, this time by Ron Carlson, Mark Yakich, Arthur Saltzman, Dave King, Tom Whalen, Steve Tomasula, Adam Clay, Mary Biddinger, as well as a bunch of others. Each page of this thing is a work of art. If you've never seen Ninth Letter, it is a production: fully glossy page with weird layouts and beautiful art. Props to 9L especially on this issue bringing in a lot of new names, at least to me.

My story THE GOWN FROM MOTHER'S STOMACH, currently the second story in SCORCH ATLAS, is also in the issue, set on an absolutely perfect image spread by artist Ho-Mui Wong. As Keith Montesano put it to me: "The artwork's sick and distorted and Lynchian and weird and melty and fits perfectly."

I can't stop staring at this magazine, even if I weren't in it. Made me feel good today, a needed blurp among a couple weeks of no sleep. Thanks to Andrew Ervin and Jodee Stanley and the rest of 9L for inclusion in something gorgeous.

They haven't put it up on the web yet but you can subscribe here. I've been a subscriber for the last few years and every issue is a sick sick puppy.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008


My insomnia is full on again. Last night fell asleep finally around 8 am and woke up at 10 am, having had bad nightmares the whole time. I haven't had a night of rest in about two weeks now. My face is turning black.

I also noticed my car was in a different position today from where I left it and the music was way down and I had had a full tank of gas but was now missing about an 1/8th. The only copy of my keys I had in my pants in my room locked. There are no other copies here.

Found this somewhere online: At age 21, Jesse Ball of New York stayed awake for 129 hours. At this same age, he had a dream that seemed to last 13 years.

This is strange because Jesse Ball is one year older than me and when I was 20 I stayed awake for exactly 129 hours also. I had mono at the time and began hallucinating and saw heads in the wall and remember talking to the heads and walking through long holes of colors.

Jesse Ball teaches classes on lying and dreaming at a university, I can't remember which one, I would like to take those.

I need to find a job teaching writing somewhere. $$$. If someone has any suggestions about this please email me. I may have said this before.

- - -

Also: today on HOTBOOKS, a brief review of Robert Lopez's PART OF THE WORLD, as if I haven't gushed about this book enough. I really haven't. If you haven't bought this yet, you are whoops.

Also: A collaborative chapbook I wrote with Justin Dobbs, now titled TWIN MOTHER, is finished and coming out sometime. It is a strange little thing, about 8000 words with a lot of weird inappropriate sex. More on that soon.

Monday, June 16, 2008


Bradley Sands is looking for 2-5k stories to fill out the next issue of BUST DOWN THE DOOR AND EAT ALL THE CHICKENS. See guidelines here and send him some stuff.

Brief review of Brandon Hobson's THE LEVITATIONIST @ HOTBOOKS.

I am looking to trade books. I am bored as fuck today and can't get anything done except staring blankly. I think something is about to happen to the earth.

If anyone has any of these books I want to trade for them, I would buy but I don't have extra $$ right now, I have a lot of stuff I can trade, email me or comment for a list if you have any of these:

BLACK MAPS by David Jauss
KNOCKEMSTIFF by Donald Ray Pollock
THE END OF THE WORLD BOOK by Alistair McCartney
THE MAIMED by Hermann Ungar
PAIN FANTASY by Jason Bredle
TWENTY GRAND by Rebecca Curtis
MURMUR by Laura Allen
LOG OF THE S.S. MRS. UNGUENTINE by Stanley Crawford
VERA & LINUS by Jesse Ball
FRANCES JOHNSON by Stacey Levine
FLATS by Rudolph Wurlitzer
PEACE by Gene Wolfe
TIN GOD by Terese Svoboda
STORY OF THE EYE by George Bataille
SKIN by Kellie Wells
COSMOS by Witold Gombrowicz
--- more wants added ---
THE DIARY OF A RAPIST by Evan S. Connell
JAMESTOWN by Matthew Sharpe
THE VOYEUR by Alain Robbe-Grillet
HIDDEN CAMERA by Zoran Zivkovic
ANAGRAMS by Lorrie Moore
MY HAPPY LIFE by Lydia Millet

I am becoming a moron.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Smokelong 21 + Hot Books

There is a new issue of SMOKELONG QUARTERLY. It is their 5 year anniversary issue and is packed to the gills with Smokelong folks, including Matt Bell, Myfanwy Collins, Dave Clapper, Katrina Denza, Scott Garson, Alicia Gifford, W.P. Kinsella, Darby Larson, Corey Mesler, Mary Miller, Jim Ruland, Claudia Smith, Kelly Spitzer, Joseph Young and many others.

A section from my novel is also there, DISEASE RELICS, as is an interview about the piece, SMOKING WITH BLAKE BUTLER.

The art accompanied by my piece was done by my sister, MORGAN KENDALL, who does some really killer stuff. You can see & buy her art & photography on etsy there.

Thanks to Dave Clapper and the Smokelong staff for the inclusion in a massive issue.

- - -

Also, I just started a new blog that will feature 100-200 word reviews of literary books and magazines, I started with the new elimae and will be updating once a day, check it out here: HOTBOOKS.

elimae etc.

My dreams recently have become so long and vivid and brutal that I am usually more tired when I wake than when I went to sleep. It's beginning to get to me. I feel ripped to shreds.

New elimae. I have a paragraph in it, sort of from a new thing I am working on: DO NOT LOOK INTO THE MOTHER'S HEAD. A lot of interesting stuff there as always, haven't read most yet, but Matt Bell's novel excerpt in particular is strong and exciting.

Other recent good reading online: NONE OF IT GRACE by Mike Young @ Pindeldyboz and LOVE YOUR FRIENDS AND NOT YOUR LOVERS by Kendra Grant Malone @ Bore Parade.

I am returning THE SAVAGE DETECTIVES after quitting at page 150. Fuck that. Death worship. No.

Friday, June 13, 2008


I've been reading a lot lately to fill the void between finishing a project and starting a new one. I think I found the next thing I want to work on but I am still in reading momentum. My floor is covered with so many new books, and my list keeps getting longer.

I am really trying to understand all the hype around Tom McCarthy's novel REMAINDER. It's been getting huge reviews and awards from lots of venues I respect. I read the book several months ago on a strong recommendation. I don't get it. Yeah, the book has a great concept (guy gets a ton of money in settlement after getting hit in the head and losing his memory, doesn't know what to do, starts buying places and stuff to recreate feelings he remembers from before the accident) but the execution of the book is so bland. Not even bland to the point of 'I want to stop reading this' but bland just like 'I am here.' I like the conceptual execution of the book and the lack of resolution but so much more could have been done with this. The writing itself had little to offer. It felt like something I would have read in a workshop and thought, yeah he'll probably sell this. The same compelling situation kept happening over and over with slight variations, and the explanation of this in the reviews I've read compares it to visual art, but really, this is a book I feel like anyone could have written if they thought of it. It has no 'personality.' It feels like a good idea drawn to its full execution without too much imagination. Maybe like a computer wrote it? Did a computer write it? That would be neat.

Anyway, if someone I know with similar taste read this and liked it, I would be interested to hear why.

Right now I am reading Roberto Bolano's THE SAVAGE DETECTIVES, for the same reason I read REMAINDER, that being that I wanted to see what all the hype is. I like Bolano's writing okay so far, and the story has me turning pages, but I still haven't seen why he is such a revolutionary. I swear if this book turns into a rebellious romance, I am going to cut someone open.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Don't press Publish Post


read THE LEVITATIONIST by Brandon Hobson and wished I had written it

thought about starting my review of Michael Kimball's absolutely incredible DEAR EVERYBODY and felt like I could never do it justice and so decided to wait until I felt I could say it right

sweated, ran 2.2 miles, wished I could make myself run further, sweated

got the new issue of PHOEBE in the mail and read the kickface work by my friends JOSH MADAY and MIKE YOUNG and some by GIRIJA TROPP who I don't know directly but know of and was very happy holding the new issue that you should buy now because they are doing a deal with AVERY ANTHOLOGY where they will send you both for the price of one (see Phoebe website or Ryan Call's blog for info) and thought 'I wish Ryan Call was going to keep editing this journal because the two issues he did were supreme'

watched unidentified #s on my cellphone ring over and over again not leaving msgs, talked to a friend I hadn't in a long while, felt glad

drank a fuckton of coffee

got teary eyed for no reason

felt dumb for not being able to figure out what to do with myself

wrote some shit for money

wrote a little on a new thing I have started in hopes I would be able to write fast the way I did on my novel but just can't make it come out that way again, realizing that was 'one time thing' based off of me having tried to write something with the feel of the novel for so many years and finally felt it come right

felt hot

felt cold

felt glad

felt worthless

felt chewy, runny, dipshitted

ate a ton of taco salad

waited, thought, ate, waited

felt dumb writing this blog post

felt excited about NO COLONY

felt excited about my collection and novel and novella manuscripts in submission process, then felt defeated, then felt hopeful, then felt glad and dumb at the same time, then felt impending, then felt retarded, then felt like I wanted to eat more taco salad and I did

just now thought 'what if i could suck my own dick' but then thought I only thought that because I was thinking about what I was thinking and felt dumb for thinking that because I know for certain by now it won't happen and probably wouldn't care that much if it did by now to be honest

wrote emails, wished I had more emails

that's enough of this goddamn inane bullshit Blake

I don't know what else to do

I want someone to throw up in my hair
I think that would make me feel better for some reason
I keep typing long bullshit and closing w/o saving
The world is probably going to squash soon anyway
It takes years to form a thought
but only like a couple seconds to say the words
I can't stop thinking why am i writing why am i writing what do i have to say
The only time I ever wrote anything I meant
was when I didn't think about it
It probably wasn't even me making the words
I think I just like the feel of pressing lots of buttons
I could become a world class videogamer
if I had the coordination
The best I ever felt might have been
the time I found the skateboard in the tall grass
of the very heavy man that lived next door to my parents with his old mother
I remember my father bitching about how the man was so fat
he wouldn't even go get the mail
and made his old mother who could hardly even toddle get it
It sometimes took her 15 minutes to get from one end of the driveway to the other
Some days she would keep walking past the mailbox a little ways
She'd go down to the end of the block even though it took forever
Then she started going further
Years later she wore neon pink running suits
You could see her on the streets around the city
She always kept her head down
The fat man started getting thinner too somehow
He'd go stand in the backyard and look at nothing
I could see him through the fence
Our dog would bark at his dog, he wouldn't blink
After I moved out I didn't see these people for years
Until last week I came by and saw the mother going for the mail again
She had a walker now and had slowed down more than ever
It took her almost three hours to get to the street and back
I could see straight through her skin
I could see veins and ache and color, words
There wasn't any mail

Monday, June 9, 2008


Since it is hot enough to sweat a house through a fudge today, might as well get your arms tied together and enjoy the new Summer 08 update of LAMINATION COLONY.

This issue contains all writers/writing I think of as FRESH, in that they are doing things I have not seen other places. New shit, is what I'm saying. New shit. It includes post-C.McCarthy venom by C. ROBIN MADIGAN, three hybrid and bizarre poems by DANIEL SPINKS, a creamy Florida vivisection by HEATHER DAVIDSON, a ruination of Danielle Steele's work by JOHN SPIERS, a poem that makes me smile by G. DAVID SCHWARTZ, a mindburp by ADAM J. MAYNARD, three new mini-masterpieces by PETER BERGHOEF, an accidental spam-survivor dodged by Dick Palace by JUSTIN RANDS, a laugh out loud awesome and really peculiar series of shorts by KENDRA GRANT MALONE, jackoff material by ZACHARY GERMAN, found dictionary peculiarity by JOSH WALLAERT, a creepy sequence of serial texts by J.A. Tyler, two stillbirth doppelganger apparati by HEDY ZIMRA, and a correspondence video to TAO LIN by MATTHEW SAVOCA.

I have read and reread the stuff in this issue perhaps moreso than the contents of any issue I've put together.

The layout on this hopefully holds up in your browser, though most pleasantly you should view it on 1028x768 res in Firefox on a mac. Otherwise, you are subject to skewing. Though the skewing may make it better.

Go get that shit and sniff it and hold your baby down and make it eat. Then tell yr friends.

Next from LC: a brutal eBook by LILY HOANG, forthcoming in JULY-ish.

Please enjoy/discuss.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Blake Butler by Chris Killen

The artist previously known as Chris Killen and now known as THE MINIATURE SWANS has just recorded and released a song bearing the name of my name, BLAKE BUTLER.

Is this song allowed to be my favorite song?

If it isn't it still is.

OH man.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

NOCOLONY.COM Miranda Mellis excerpt

NO COLONY now has a brief excerpt from a story by MIRANDA MELLIS (author of THE REVISIONIST) the full text of which will be featured in Issue 1. It's an absolute mindeater of a story. Go take a peek and preorder the issue. Please?!?!?!?!?!?!?

We have now sold Pushcart nominations to Barry Sanders and Doris Lessing. JESUS CHRIST GET ONE BEFORE THEY'RE ALL GONE!!!!!

It is nice to buy new magazines, though, really.

I am reading Michael Kimball's DEAR EVERYBODY today, it is BEYOND. No joke.

Friday, June 6, 2008

NOCOLONY.COM Buy a Pushcart

Inaugural issue of NO COLONY is now available for presale. Any folks who preorder will be thanked profusely via metronomic brain stem action.

The preorder price is $11 including shipping.

Also available on the site are two new publishing options we'd like to encourage you to consider.

For a measly $400 American dollars, the value of which decreases by the polar minute, you can buy your text into our magazine.

For $650 American dollars, you can buy your text into our magazine and be guaranteed a very special Pushcart nomination. We won't spill grease on the application.

Our dicks are very hard as we make this announcement.

This supplemental money will not be spent on the magazine but on cheese and organ donors and maybe like curtains or Windex or little babies.

Stories accepted in this way will be printed in pink text on black paper, to make them stand out just that much more.

Your fame is exponentially increasing, I can smell it.

We are not liars fucks or morons maybe.

Here is an image I started to use on the NO COLONY website but then did not.

I am also an organism.

Let sluts collide.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Keyhole 3 + Oranges & Sardines

Keyhole issue 3 is out now, with work by ELIZABETH ELLEN (yo!), Monica Kilian, Shellie Zacharia, Joshua Diamond, Tim Keppel, and several others including my dumb ass.

I have 5 things about young dead celebrities from the same set as this one regarding Heath Ledger. Those included are Chris Farley, Nancy Spungen, Sharon Tate, Tupac and Andy Kaufman.

I haven't seen the issue yet but I do have issue 2 which kicked my balls via William Walsh, Michael Kimball, Eric Spitznagel, Myfanwy Collins, and etc.

Please consume.


The debut issue of Oranges & Sardines, another publication from Didi Menendez and the miPOesias crowd, is also now launched.

Featuring Artists: Ethan Diehl, Marcia Molnar, Holly Picano, Cheryl Kelley, Jennifer Wildermuth, L.D. Grant, Niel Hollingsworth, Steph Chard, Jeremy Baum, Jeff Filipski and E.B. Goodale. Poems by Blake Butler, Dana King, J.P. Dancing Bear, Josh Olsen, Steffi Drewes, Matthew Hittinger, Patrick Leonard, Diana Adams and Greame Mullen. Short story by Kirk Curnutt. Reviews by Miguel Murphy, Michael Parker, Cheryl Townsend, Courtney Campbell and Jim Knowles. Columns by Talia Reed and Caridad McCormick. Grace Cavalieri interviews Mark Doty.

It's a really beautifully designed issue, with full color art and photos on most every page and an excellent layout and language. Very killer.

In it I have a list poem about people dying and a prose poem that was excerpted from a story in SCORCH ATLAS.

Purchase a copy from here.

Or download pdf for a limited time from here.

Thanks. Summer is here.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Eugene Marten's IN THE BLIND

Just finished reading Eugene Marten's novel IN THE BLIND from Turtle Point Press.

I have to say that on a sentence by sentence level this is one of my favorite books in recent memory. Marten's sentences are chiseled beyond teeth. It seems like every single line in this book was worked on for hours, and hours spent connecting them, and yet the story flows so smoothly, almost with an peculiar eloquence you can't help but swallow hard at.

IN THE BLIND follows this narrator around, a man who gets out of prison for a drunk driving accident and gets a job at a locksmith's. A lot of the book is filled with him thinking about locks, learning to break them, opening rooms for people, dealing with the strange, all of it in clipped and gorgeous language, actually similar in a way to SEAVIEW by Toby Olsen which I talked about a few months ago after it cut me.

I learned a lot from reading this book, in the way that Marten leaves things out, things most other authors leave in, allowing the reader to jump with him over the baggage and get to the meat, and in the transition leaving these weird gaps of air that make the surroundings that much more pushy and compelling. Certain sections of this book seem to travel out into a branch of nowhere, sort of like searching for a combination on a lock, if you'll allow the comparison. There's one section where the narrator moves through a dark part of a moored ship that is among my favorite scenes in any recent book I can think of.

I remember an interview with Donald Antrim where he was talking about how sometimes he gets the most glee in finding the ways he moves a character through a room. Marten has this in his teeth. Really. Fuck. Every paragraph is precision. I am going to stop gushing now.

I am going to open to a random page in the book and type the first paragraph I see.

I found a long one. I am going to type it anyway.

- - -

Lights out at ten. The switch that started the dark stopped the clock and you press your bunk, bury your head under your pillow, stuff your ears with cotton or foam rubber. You sleep two or three hours and you can hear it in your dreams, nightmare within a nightmare, the screaming, chanting, moaning, singing, rhyming, sobbing, preaching (Let me talk to you about God! What's He got I don't? Well it might be bigger and a whole lot sweeter!), howling of wolves, crowing of crows, knock knock jokes, someone jerking off at the top of his lungs, shouted conversations about sports devolving into death threats and gibberish, mothers, wives, and girlfriends cast in a contest of lurid punchlines (Nigger your mother's titties hang so low she got wheels on her bra, Nigger your family so brokeass poor they brush they teeth for breakfast, swallow they spit for supper), how someone's gonna toss someone's salad, how they're gonna and they're gonna till it's time to smooth your sheet, for forever till first light, The bitch cut me in my face, she cut me in my face, she ain't cute enough to cut me in my face.

If you wanted to sleep, the saying says, you shouldn't have come.

- - -

If that excerpt doesn't sell a book I don't know what will.

Every graph is that nice, often much less brutal, but still full of the refined power. You can feel the work here, you can smell it, and it made my blood tingle a little most every line.

I can't tell you how good this book is. I am trying.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Peter Markus & Lindsay Lohan's Tits


I reviewed PETER MARKUS's new novel BOB, OR MAN ON BOAT out now from DZANC BOOKS at NEW PAGES along with other good reviews by Josh Maday, Sean Lovelace, Matt Bell and others.


Also, LINDSAYLOHANSTITS.INFO is now live. I am going to do something else with it but I'm not sure what yet.

I will be launching another site this or next week that will actually provide a useful service I think.

Um, something something.

Oh also, DEREK WHITE is selling a ton of his stuff before he moves to Africa, the lucky bastard. You can browse a chunk of his music and book library and buy them for cheap. It is fun to shop from photographs. I already snagged several good books including stuff by Deb Olin Unferth, Joyelle McSweeney, Brandon Hobson, plus two copies of literary mags I really wanted. Go get some shit from Derek's GOAT RODEO.

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!I want to move to Africa too !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Rewatched SONGS FROM THE SECOND FLOOR last night, a Swedish surrealist film by Roy Andersson with some of the best filmwork in recent memory and really funny. I bought it years ago right after I first saw it and forgot and hadn't even opened it yet. I would be hard pressed to find a movie more up my alley. Weird conversational steadicam scenes in highly stylized rooms while all this chaotic shit goes on the background and no one really even mentions it. End of world, something, something. I'd forgotten. I want to get Roy Andersson's new film YOU, THE LIVING but it's only on PAL dvd, fuck.

Roy Andersson also makes really strange commericals in Sweden, like this one:

and this one

You can read what they are saying in the 2nd one in the youtube page description. It is funny. A lot of SONGS FROM THE SECOND FLOOR has the same look and feel as that 2nd commercial.

America is a neon pisshole.

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!I want to go to Sweden too!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, June 1, 2008

NEWHEAVY.COM submissions

I am now seeking surreal or absurdist prose poems and/or text blabber or what have you, between 10 and 400 words to feature with video and photo installations on NEW HEAVY. The specifications are that the prose poem(s) feature several internet keyword type ideas as well as blending garbage with memory and/or dreamshit, sort of in the mode of the video addendums already over there. I don't want things that got worked on. I want things that just came out. I am interested in a genre called EJACULATURE. Anything goes. You might also include a video or photos you want to put with it, though I may not use them. I will use some video with the piece. I am thinking of other things to look for. If you want to submit, send to me at blakebutler [at] gmail [dot] com OR TO newheavycom [at] gmail [dot] com. Reresponse letters will only use the word YES or NO I think. No feeling bad if it says NO just send another one. Don't think about what you're writing.

I need outlets.

Also I am looking for videos or photo sets of people doing things, though they must make me think a little, something.

I am working now on another novella I think caused by this:

NOTE TO SELF: words I am no longer allowed to use in my writing from this point forward: 'bubble' 'certain' 'nit' 'window' 'muck' 'buzz' or 'hum' 'balloon' 'gleam' many others probably

Yeah okay.

NOTE NOT TO SELF: Do yourself a favor and go rent the documentary KING OF KONG.

It is second only to AMERICAN MOVIE in my favorite docs of all time, maybe, something, so what. Anyway, it is incredible.