For clarity's sake: I don't hate meaning. I hate forced meaning, statically intended meaning, 'themes' 'thematic orchestration' 'this is who my character is' 'forced arcs' 'forced illumination of character's love life history and upbringing, as if we are programmed by what we've done' 'I want to know how this character makes love' No thanks. As if anyone could palpably know something that nobody else knows or has never said enough to say it in a clear way, or by studied evocation. As if all themes haven't been handed to us on plates and again and again and again for years and year. There is a reason you don't watch books on TV.
I enjoy watching THE PICK UP ARTIST 2 & I miss I LOVE MONEY already, I really do.
I am reading, among other things, Robert Pinget's TRIO right now from Dalkey, a French surrealist from the 50's, hung with Robbe Grillet and shit, the intro to the book is all him talking about how writing should be a process of total discovery, and how he refuses to go into his work knowing anything beforehand.
It is a really sexy book, pure black slick cover with nails on it.
TRIO, which is three novellas, I recommend heavily, it's kind of like the post magical realist stuff a lot of people do now, where weird shit happens and its cycled into these crazy offshoots and weird images that begin to tie into one another but in bizarre ways, but mixed with the everyday, a kind of collision of layers, kids vomit jam, boys stuff cucumbers full of explosives and chuck them at people, a guy finds a stairwell on the beach to nothing, but in a metered mind, this paragraph:
"All night long he annotated the text. The next he'd got the formula off by heart. That evening, without even thinking, he recited it. The penknife with which he was about to cut a slice of bread plunged itself, of its own accord, between his two eyes."
All this is in like the first 25 pages, awesome. Way head of its time.
It has an intro by Updike, if that makes you feel better.
I am the #1 google hit for 'blood comes from vegina while fucked by black brutally'. Super neat.
In other news, I am now coediting with Lily Hoang an anthology of innovative writers under 30. Yeah, I know it sucks that you are 30 or more, I am gonna be 30 in a couple months. But I think it's time there was an anthology focusing on really young weird voices. So Lily and I are really excited about this thing. Here's the call (please no personal emails re: this):
Lily Hoang & Blake Butler are now in the early stages of putting together an anthology to feature innovative writers under the age of 30. The anthology has interest from a respected small press.
Please submit no more than 15 pages of prose/poetry/whatever goes to: firstname.lastname@example.org by January 15. Send as .doc or .rtf attachment. (For truly exceptional cases, we will consider longer submissions.) Previously unpublished work only please. Also, all submissions should be open to editorial review.
We’re looking for the innovative, fresh, exciting writing, and as long as you’re under 30 & doing new things with words, please submit.
We want to find some really crazy shit, form and language innovation is what we're after, so send the weird shit, the new.
Tomorrow or next day will post about publication search history for SA. Thanks to everyone for all the kind words and salutation. It means a lot.