Wednesday, December 31, 2008


[add EVER on Goodreads :)]

We watched 'The Wrestler' last night. Don't look at the trailer that is going around online. It is nothing like the actual film. I never thought Aronofsky would be able to out-fuckify 'Requiem for a Dream' in pure sad, but this one probably does it, if not for the more human feeling circumstances of the story, but just for Mickey Rourke's brutally 'on' performance, and the gritty, no-shtick feel of the shots. The texture of the film reminded me a lot of Gummo for some reason, in that just looking at certain shots and the simple movements of people on screen, or not even moving, was where the power was. One of the more worth-watching films I've seen in a long while probably, not that there's been much competition.

Also last night finished reading Vanessa Place's LA MEDUSA. I could not stop with this book, I read all 500 pages in pretty much 3 days. I'm not sure how to describe the experience of the book except that it is truly an experience. Vanessa Place has really created a text object here, one so dense and prismatic in its making that it might be impossible for anyone to ever take it all in: there's just that much. I love the encyclopedic quality of it, and the way she managed to stretch the time of the book, which as I understand it executes in a very short period, though scenes go on as if inside that time, and yet skewing it out in each section, the way books like INFINITE JEST can do, and other.

Here is part of what Silverblatt said about it:

La Medusa returns to James Joyce's Ulysees to find the inspiration for an investigation into the nature of experience. Los Angeles takes the role of Dublin. The brain and its double cortex generate the stylistic intricacies that the organs and senses do in Joyce.

It's hard book to contain in explication, but that gives an idea of its mass.

One section, where one of the main character is eating at a Mexican restaurant by himself, is one of the best executions of a scene over sections I can remember. It also really made me want to eat Mexican food, like bad. Usually I don't like when authors write about food in a way as if trying to make you taste the texture of the food, but the way she does it really works. I think this is a book of appetites, and cataloguing. There is something post-Beat in it in that way: lists (a list of strange barbies, a list of synonyms for vagina, though worked into the narrative thread somehow, a kind of shapeshifting that continually occurs in midst of the reading without managing to interrupt), and hyper consciousnesses, and combining the high with the low in these really rhythmic and syllabic and smart sentences. LA MEDUSA reminds me a lot of Lynne Tillman's AMERICAN GENIUS, which is another of my all time recent favorites.

There is also a voodoo-ish ritual scene among a family in the book that is amazing, and gets that mesh of violence and incantation and animal language that I so love.

Quite a few sections are written as in rap, which is so hard to pull off, and I'm still impressed with how well she nailed them: while I was in the bathtub with the book I actually started rapping it out loud and then couldn't stop for several pages.

Overall, a killer of a book, and one I will remember, and probably often open up to look at the pages.

Anyway, a good end to a year of reading, a close out.

I'm not big on new year consecrating, but I feel like things now are moving in a new direction for real for once. That is good to think about even if really it's just the next day.

Thanks to Gert Jonke for inspiring me 24k words into another new novel already so I have something to think about besides peas and tinkle. GEOMETRIC REGIONAL NOVEL seriously changed my writing mind.

Oh, the new issue of Tarpaulin Sky is out now, and having read about half of it now I can honestly say I haven't read one piece that I haven't been really impressed by: including Joanna Ruocco and Peter Davis. Peter Davis has more of those 'extreme honesty' poems like the ones on Lamination Colony, which makes me want a whole book of them. It has a much different version of a section of EVER in it also.

Had a small snag with the files for EVER due to Derek's cruddy Nairboi net connection working like mud, but it is clean now and on its way. Book should be here by my bday Jan 14th, which is still around for preorder.


Monday, December 29, 2008


Why I love Diane Williams:

What is this thing I have made? Here is a mother in a rage because she cannot get sexual gratification from the idea that her son might be killed. How did I get to that? This is horrible, this is horrible. Well, then we get pornography. I was really distressed as Diane Williams, the hopefully nice person in the real world. Should this be literature? Is this my business—to produce this? Is this right? Is this really what I want to be doing? And then this certainty that yes, this is exactly what I want to be doing. I am far from the only one who believes that experience teaches us that when you speak a nightmare and speak it to its limit, whatever it is, then that speech has a healing force. And if it’s speakable, if the configuration of feeling can be manipulated, can be produced, then it’s a true feeling, shared by many, and it’s the sort of feeling which should be utterly revealed. But I must say that for me—the respectable version of myself—there’s still fear, and a great deal of disgust when I see that story. Then I have to reassert myself as an artist, and say no, this is exactly my business.

Why I love Johannes Goransson:

As Walter Benjamin points out in his famous essay "The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction," Dada and Surrealism sought to "shock" or "distract" the reader out of that contemplative space. Often that "shock" is misread as the Hollywood shocking of giant sharks and such. But it's more of an electrical shock that charges you up and exhausts you. Breton said he felt "charged" from going to the movies with Jacques Vache. And I think Aase's poetry in many ways is a more extreme version of this kind of electric shock: to damage the reader out of his or her numbness. To charge us back to electricity. The "healing" can't start until after the fox-drubbing. The "healing" might be comparable to the exhaustion people reported after coming out of the movie theaters in the 1910s.

The paradox of the way I'm putting this is that the "aliveness" is the compulsive pleasure of jouissance that comes from the death-drive. To go back to Plath, her speaker is scared of opening the bee box because she senses the horrible pleasure of the contents, which is death.

I am figuring something out.

Like when you are sucking an ice cube right out of the freezer and an air pocket pops against your teeth.

Ian Curtis killed himself immediately after watching Herzog's Stroszek and listening to Iggy Pop's The Idiot.

Who was

Thursday, December 25, 2008

What I Read in 2008

I read a lot this year. 84 books by the list I keep (and including the 'La Medusa' I am currently in the middle of), though sometimes I forget to mark them down, and mostly not including chapbooks or magazines or manuscripts, etc., and also not including those I gave up on in the middle (except one, which I almost finished, and still really liked certain things about what I did read mostly).

A lot of these I blogged about or reviewed but I decided to write little blurbettes about each, which just took a really long time, had I realized I read so much, oh well.

I can't think of which of these are favorites of the year, I read so much that absolutely killed me this year and was fueled by it so much. What you read is just as important to the writing itself as anything else I think, and so in some ways to some extent this list was my year in full, at least in mind. I started to star the ones that really nailed me, but there were so many, and in different ways, that I decided to just go with the list as list, in the order they were read. Ratings are overrated.

A strange year, outside of booklife, the first half mostly sucking dick, the second kind of magic enough to make up for it and more. Thanks to all who have been a part. The internet is my anti-lipid mommy.

2008 Reading List

1. Tender Buttons by Gertrude Stein: I think I started reading this on New Year's Day as a joke, I think this is the greatest standup routine ever written, it is very funny, I think it was funny on purpose for all reasons, I want to lick Gertrude Stein's nose.

2. Ovenman by Jeff Parker: Fun and funny book, a page turner with poise, and nails a voice that you almost never hear in fiction: the slacker. Fun.

3. Grim Tales by Norman Lock: my review in the Believer

4. Catching the Big Fish by David Lynch: I should have done this on audio book because hearing Lynch talk is hilarious, on the page it is less interesting, but still fun for the tidbits like his comment about the blue box in Mulholland Drive: "I have no idea what that was."

5. St. Lucy’s School for Girls Raised by Wolves by Karen Russell: I don't remember finishing this, it was okay.

6. Skinny Dipping in the Lake of the Dead by Alan Deniro: This read like something you find buried in the cookies of an old hard drive, again, a really strange voice and I can't think of many books like it.

7. Autobiography of Red by Anne Carson: Most people know this one already, really interesting format for book: prose poetry almost with narrative, good, vivid.

8. The Collected Works of Billy the Kid by Michael Ondaatje: like the Carson but of a more collagist ilk, I should probably read more Ondaatje, there are good violences in this bitch

9. Tortoise by James Lewelling: god, weird book, I really like the way he made the paragraphs bleed into one another by using slight repetitions, I think I ripped some of this off in a my PRETEND chapbook, the airplane scenes. Very strange and cool.

10. The Human War by Noah Cicero: I borrowed this from Tao, I don't think I got it.

11. Arkansas by John Brandon: I thought the first chapter of this was great and the rest was all kind of repetitive and went nowhere, don't really understand the hype. But the opening is rad.

12. Clown Girl by Monica Drake: Another strong sentenced page-turner, like Ovenman in that way of strange voice and can't stop reading, plus a great premise with execution.

13. Dear Mr. Capote by Gordon Lish: Not my favorite Lish by any stretch, I think I actually stopped reading it halfway through and came back later in the year, it works less than his other books to me.

14. Creation Myths by Mathias Svalina: I'm not a big fan of chapbooks usually but this one really works, great imagery and concept, funny and sticks in your teeth, probably my favorite words I've read by Svalina.

15. Bad Bad by Chelsey Minnis: Certain poems in here killed me, some of the------- stuff I wasn't as into, but that earrings poem and a few others that were more with words are worth the price of the book alone. What a freak :)

16. Seaview by Toby Olsen: I loved the shit out of this book, anyone that can write about golf and make it seem magic is a master, wrote about it here

17. A Green Light by Matthew Rohrer: This is a really fun and uniquely voiced book, I pick it up and look at random pages a lot.

18. The Stupefying Flashbulbs by Daniel Brenner: I read this several times in a row in a few days, it has some incredible cubist-like, data-imagery, I can't think of many books like it, I think he wrote it in a week or two or something, not enough people talked about this book, it has a presence like the Mulholland Drive cube to me.

19. Pilot by Johannes Goransson: I read this on a treadmill and it made me dizzy, Johannes is doing some of my favorite work in brutal and new phrased words right now, really awesome, more lineated than his 2 other books from this year.

20. Bob, or Man on Boat by Peter Markus: unlike any other book this year, I reviewed it here

21. Remainder by Tom McCarthy: Another book I did not understand the hype of: all premise, stuck in its own execution. Not 'that bad' but not a big deal either

22. Bear Stories by J’Lyn Chapman: This is a beautiful taste treat, I interviewed J'Lyn about it here

23. My Life in the Bush of Ghosts by Amos Tutuola: among my favorites of the year and 'why the hell had I not read this,' I think it influenced EVER a lot and did a lot for my thinking of the way narrative can move in ways outside A to B without being pure ridiculousness, a must read for most

24. Motorman by David Ohle (2nd time): hadn't read this in years since I first bought it, does a lot of things no other book I can think of does, again weird vaguely scientific logic, post-Burroughs in the way that reinvents the genre

25. Carrying the Body by Dawn Raffel: a creepy and almost breathless book, maybe made me want to really focus on writing about destroying children, this is like Edward Gorey on brain destructing downers, awesome poise

26. Actual Air by David Berman: hilarious and weird, most would say a classic, great

27. Flet by Joyelle McSweeney: god, Joyelle is really doing some new things with narrative, making this hyper-worlds out of style and language that really get my brain jarred and apt for making )*(&*#&$ come out of my eyes: some of her passages are just so new its like you are not reading and instead are in a very fucked video game made of deleted language, I read this on a mountain

28. Stranger Things Happen by Kelly Link: I love the shit out of Kelly Link, you have to

29. A New Quarantine Will Take My Place by Johannes Goransson: probably my favorite of Johannes's 3 books this year (not counting his translations), this is one of those they'll be realizing what happened in it years from now: a new genre I think, names are a waste of time.

30. Kissed By by Alexandra Chasin: certain stories in here nailed me, others left me a little cold, though I read most of it on a plane and I hate planes, she is 'breaking rules'

31. Oh Baby by Kim Chinquee: Kim can pack more into a paragraph than a lot of people, using words you have heard but not that way before, a very smart book that weighs much more than it feels in hand, magic

32. Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy by Tao Lin: I wrote about this book and interviewed Tao here

33. The Changeling by Joy Williams: an amazing book that makes you feel like you have a fever and are at the people zoo, this is by far the best Joy Williams book I have read, massive sentences and amazing ideas: best rerelease of the year by far, wrote about it more here

34. Yes, Master by Michael Earl Craig: I like the strange imagery here, and the jokes, it is funny

35. How Much of Us There Was by Michael Kimball: second time reading this book, crippled me some, wrote about it more here

36. In the Blind by Eugene Marten: top 5 older of the year for me for sure, kind of mind blowing, wrote about this more here

37. Grim Tales by Norman Lock (2nd time): reread again for review purposes, and for brilliance

38. Speedboat by Renata Adler: I read this from having bought it because it was taught by DFW, it is clear why, a totally brilliant and hardcore book, maybe the most packed paragraphs ever

39. Dear Everybody by Michael Kimball: one of the best of the year, and new, I reviewed this here

40. The Levitationist by Brandon Hobson: god, such a brain eater of a book, dream imagery perfected, an example of the best ways fiction can be imagistic and mindbending, an important book

41. Minor Robberies by Deb Olin Unferth: One of my favorite shorts of the year was in here, I can't remember the name of it off the top of my head but really a cool and bizarre collection

42. Atmospheric Disturbances by Rivka Galchen: stilted some but had its moments, i felt bored most of the time reading it, but got to end, the final chapter was excellent and made me wish the rest of the book had been as such

43. It Was Like My Trying to Have a Tender-Hearted Nature by Diane Williams: reading Diane Williams makes me want to write almost every single time, no one really writes like this, such weird twists

44. The Spectacle of the Body by Noy Holland: worth it for 'Orbit' alone, which is one of the greatest stories of the past 10 years, if I had to teach voice to writing students I would use this book

45. Marsupial by Derek White: I think this is a branch of a new genre, for real, I wrote about it at length here

46. As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner (reread): hadn't read since 10th grade or something, great sentences, duh

47. The Tormented Mirror by Russell Edson: Edson is a nutcase, in a good way, he can 'do anything' and get away with it I think, maybe though I think he is slightly overrated, 'when he is on he is on'

48. The Lost Books of the Odyssey by Zach Mason: certain sections of this made me go 'wow,' a really great concept for a book and very smart in execution

49. Remainland by Aase Berg: I had this book open at my desk when I was writing one of the novels I worked on this year, really brutal and juxaposing imagery, fantastic fuel

50. The Boy Who Killed Caterpillars by Joshua Kornreich: this book seriously made me feel dirty in a way unlike any book ever, I don't know why, a student of Peter Markus, it is about a kid whose father's shit seems to have strange properties, really disconcerting in its aura in a way I can't explain, I mean I really felt like the same way I did the first time I saw the film Salo, totally bizarre

51. Dear Ra by Johannes Goransson: I loved this book like Kenneth Anger and wrote about it at length here

52. Log of the S.S. the Mrs. Unguentine by Stanley Crawford: I want a passage from this book tattooed on me, I might do it, this book quickly jumped into my top 20 of all time I think, what a brain bruiser, I wrote about this and asked Stanley to be my grandfather here

53. Boring boring boring boring borning boring boring by Zach Plague: best book design of the past 5 years I think, and with a story that meshes so many strands of storytelling, I can think of another book like this in any way

54. Waste by Eugene Marten: Another by Marten that killed me, I loved this and wrote about it a lot here

55. The Battlefield Where The Moon Says I Love You by Frank Stanford: still in the middle of this, and maybe will spend years finishing it, but page for page this book probably has more meat inside it than any other book ever written, no kidding, one page could set you up for weeks, that is not an exaggeration, huge

56. Nylund the Sarcographer by Joyelle McSweeney: Connected to the FLET, another brilliant mashing of language and some genre I can't quite put together, Joyelle I think is doing something with image and language and the surreal that no one has done, I hope she makes more books in this vein

57. The Singing Fish by Peter Markus: reread this also after a while since having done the first time, I don't know how Peter is able to use such spare evocation and make it sing so hard, he is like a tree with blood rings, these images cut

58. Vacation by Deb Olin Unferth: a truly strange mash of things going on in this book, it felt 'all over the place' in a good way, she maybe has one of the strangest tones in books right now

59. Stories in the Worst Way by Gary Lutz (2nd time): I really need to read this at least once a year, a formative book for anyone who touches it, that is not an exaggeration, Lutz is king

60. Hogg by Samuel Delany: yeah, brutal, but in the end it kind of got old, I love brutal violence but this at some point felt routine, still though the images stick in your head regardless of how you want them to, and certain passage like where the guy sticks the nail down his pisshole will keep in your forever likely

61. Changing by Lily Hoang: this book made me gasp when I saw it, she took the I-Ching and turned it on itself in these strangely formatted, textual objects, Joyelle's blurb on this is right on about how it is an impossible thing, a dream object, or however it was put, I have also not seen another book like this ** JUST CAME OUT FROM FAIRY TALE REVIEW PRESS **

62. The Long Trial of Nolan Dugatti by Stephen Graham Jones: a very short novel about being inside a video game, I loved the premise and could not stop reading it, the suicide letters that intersperse the other text are black comedy at high mark, SGJ has extreme output

63. Midnight Picnic by Nick Antosca: god, another weird book with tone I can't quite put a finger on, a mix of early McCarthy and those dreams you have after ingesting too much sugar, at some point near the middle I texted Nick and said, dude you did it, or something, thankfully saved by Word Riot Press

64. Fog & Car by Eugene Lim: Ellipsis Press really killed it with the debut this year, both titles being of such high quality, I loved and wrote about this here

65. Slouching in the Path of a Comet by Mike Dockins: Dockins can do the tongue in cheek weirdo monologue like no other, he makes me laugh out loud, no one is writing poems like this but Dockins because only Dockins can, a really strange book of verse and prose poems, Dockins knows lists

66. Creamy Bullets by Kevin Sampsell: Sampsell is a magician, and reminds me of Sam Lipsyte when Lipsyte is really on, but also can change gears like maybe no other person writing right now, this book spans masses, the story that was in 3rd bed totally kills me as one of the best 'like a dream' narratives I can think of

67. Holy Land by Rauan Klassnik (2x): I read this twice back to back, Ron makes violence do the new, and his brand I think cripples the earlier mentioned 'Hogg' in that he makes the putrid spiritual or at least transcendent, he is important

68. Atlassed by Jane Unrue: Somewhat on the Joyelle McSweeney page maybe, Unrue creates these worlds that exist nowhere but in her books, like little mirrored halls that go on forever, and new new new language mashes, I loved this, 'The Snarl is on the Mask' is one of my new favorite stories

69. Last Days by Brian Evenson: new Brian Evenson is like a party, no one can render hysteria and the tension with such clean sentences and such ouch, this book is a haunter, just like everything this man has ever written, he is an idol

70. Disciplines by Diana George: like walking down a poisoned hallway or something, I don't know how she makes these completely objective massively layered world, another haunter, and in like 30 pages, I need another book from her

71. Parabola by Lily Hoang: this book takes metatext to the next level, Lily seriously pulled out all the stops on this and kind of invented her own genre that still tells a palpable and family centered story line, this is like a magic textbook, but compulsive, she is a powerhouse

72. In the Colorless Round by Joanna Howard: another great chapbook from Noemi Press, Joanna Howard is another I want more of, sentences, sentences

73. Dad Says He Saw You At the Mall by Ken Sparling: another of my new all time favorites, absolutely hilarious and new, Knopf at its best, I wrote about this here

74. The Haunted Hillbilly by Derek McCormack: McCormack has done work with Sparling, and this book is also creepy in a way I can't figure out, who else write books like this, no one, extremely clipped sentences that still evoke a ton and unlike the rest

75. The External Combustion Engine by Michael Ives: in the vein of the Unrue, these are stylistic masterpieces when they are on, this made me want to steal a lot from him, and made me think a lot about form and how it dictates language

76. Stories in Another Language by Yannick Murphy: fucking brilliant collection again from Knopf, maybe one of my favorite collections for how every story pretty much is a gut puncher, and sentences like brick houses made of candy, jesus

77. The Inland Sea by Brandon Shimoda: one of my favorite covers I've seen in a while

78. The High Traverse by Richard Blanchard: had this on my shelf forever, and has a Lish blurb, weird boyish sentences in clipped list-like manners, I can't think how to explain what this book does, if you like Lish you need this

79. The Way Through Doors by Jesse Ball: I will be reviewing this for the Believer in April, it is a truly insane feat that he pulled off here, and I think even more electric than Samdedi The Deafness, which is saying a lot, this book is important and post-Calvino, magic

80. Lucky Unlucky Days by Daniel Grandbois: hilariously strange flash fictions that reinvent fairy tales and spin them in ways you would not have expected, new

81. Island People by Coleman Dowell: the first 60 pages of this beat my head in, and I could not stop thinking about it, near the middle it started to sag for me a little and the premise got old and I put it down, it is very heavy and complex, but for the first 60 pages alone this thing is worth checking out, maybe I got impatient too fast, that happens with books I end up loving, jury is out

82. The Tree of No by Sandy Florian: Action books eats my face throbbingly, this book is worth it if for the 'Parables' section alone, a post-Biblical freakshow, awesome

83. Geometric Regional Novel by Gert Jonke: I read straight through this in one sitting and had my head lopped off by it, in the mind of Invisible Cities but even heavier and more inventive, and funny!, and fun to read, this immediately made me start writing in the mind of it, and got me working on a new novel, one of my favorite finds of the last several years, totally in need of more attention, a true hidden gem if there ever was one, god bless Dalkey Archive

84. La Medusa by Vanessa Place: (in progress) Just started this yesterday, the biggest book I've seen out from fc2 (500 pages), a mammoth in size and in concept apparently, so many voices based mostly in California and very sentence-oriented (Mike Young, I think you would eat this for supper), I am loving it so far having read the first 120 pages or so, looking fwd to heading further in

Goal for 2009: read some older shits, some longer shits, and maybe somehow more than 84 shits, if I can maintain the hide

Monday, December 22, 2008


When I get really drunk, I do dance of mange, and shoot eye fire:

My friend added the Who patch to his shirt cause it was said he looks like Pete Townshend in this picture. In real life I never expose my wings in light.

Objective reporting statement in lieu of lieu:

Nick Ripatrazone asked me to write an essay about running for the University of El Paso's new web journal Quicksilver. It was harder than I thought. Here is what came out: running essay.

People are worrying too much about what words are, it's okay I promise

Sam Pink is a calming presence in my life

Nothing else worth saying

who writers are

I think my sister's dog is a writer, it likes when my dad gives it turkey cold cuts even though he has been asked time and time again not to give the dog the cold cuts because it is making her fat but he does it anyway because the dog becomes pleased and shakes for the cold cut, I have seen my father give her several in the span of an hour.

I think my sister's not yet and maybe never to be born child is a writer because it plans to have hands.

My new favorite thing to do is when I make a typo, instead of going back to fix the typo I let my fingers go and hit a bunch extra keys on top of the typo and leave it that way, it feels like I am playing the piano.

I am trying to convince myself to stop talking and doing things around in this internet area but all that is is a tendency in me to want to be contrary no matter what, and really I am too frightened of being awake in the awake clod to not come on the internet, as much as I may try to manifest the idea that I could disappear at will.

I think the guy who I am waiting on to come over and replace a broken window is a writer because he woke up today and ate breakfast and is late and is making me tired even though I just got up and I want it to be warmer in here but paying for heat all the time is expensive and the feeling of being cold will pass.

It's okay to get disgruntled, there was a day within the last six years that I got disgruntled and went and put my hand in the Disposall and had my other hand on the switch that turns on the Disposall and I stood there looking at the fold my arms made and I realize a Disposall's blades are likely not that effective, particularly for flesh and bone.

I think the idiot who manages my homeowner's association is a writer because she makes notes in the margins of my late homeowner's bill that for a while I thought I could have used to sue her but then realized it would not hold up in court. The wall across from me now is light blue framed with a white that lends the blue the context of its blueness.

No, my feet are really, it's so cold like they are hot.

I know there are writers who get kicks about talking about being writers, from now on when people ask me what I do I am going to say I am an eater or I am metabolism.

I am not better than anyone most of the time. Sometimes I am better than a lot of people though just as often likely I am worse. Sometimes I am jumping up and down on a brand of Windex bacon-scented. I can't think any more than I already do.

If some days you want to cut your face off or spend the whole day at Kinko's making copies of nothing to see how high you can run up a bill, look here, this is the story that my grandfather always used to tell me just by looking across the room in that halfroom with the weird yellow light where it seemed like every inch of the walls had stuffed animal heads hanging from them and like the walls were those false folding partition dividers you could fold like an accordion to go on into the next room:

No really I am going to stop soon because there is a slur dam to build.

William Trevor.

The independent publishing circuit is the same as the other one, except there is an illusion of another way, and another goal maybe, though I think the ratio of good people to bad people remains the same, which is probably more good than bad. Probably not the same at all. I am just talking to the computer.

One day I will do a good job on the good team. The metal in this room is very silver. My armpits are stinging. None of these words are words.

I don't care if this post makes you tired of me or makes you hate being involved in the text creation. It can all stop whenever we're both ready.

Please leave me negative comments about my life.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Roberto Bolano became the 7th wiccan in the oval office with a cleft eye and something made of Lysol

I am probably not going to vote until someone is on the ballot who has descended from Rommel. Specifically Rommel: an enduring legacy of Rommel's character is that he is also considered to be a chivalrous and humane military officer in contrast with many other figures of Nazi Germany.

I feel like taking a tree 40x my height and finding a way to way pieces of it to certain figures in publishing so that when I am finishing they together own the body of an ex-tree that extends across America. WHICH IS NOT A LINE REFERRING TO THE DESTRUCTION OF THE FOREST BECAUSE I THINK THEY ALL SHOULD BE BURNT OR SACRIFICED IN THE NAME OF BIRTHDAY CAKE.

Online publishing, in the forums where it is the 'democratization of literature,' is the picket sign of literature. It is where people go to throw rejection letter confetti and press fewer buttons to achieve a result that others in other years where there was only the paper button that, in the end, liquidates the signal to the point that some days I can't bring myself to click the Firefox button. My cookie browser queue, when cut and pasted into a single file, can be printed out and worn as pants that when dressed in in certain districts of my home in downtown Atlanta, where the ghetto is being destroyed, will result in the lamination of tomato paste.

The concept of the democratization of literature is like having all the channels sold to the megagroup that produces Friends for all those years so people would need that shelf in their living room for the boxsets arrayed in such a way that the colors when placed in the right order make you grow one strand of new hair out on your ass so far that you have the central strand required for your first child's playnoose.

Last night I argued in favor of Georgia remaining one of two states where you can not buy beer on Sunday, which led me to realize that on certain unannounced days the doors to Borders and B&N should be sealed at peak business hours with goose putty and left as such for an indefinite period. The Starbucks or Seattle's Best Coffee cafes attached the bookseller will be required to feed the contained using least sold items first, up the line to the Frappucchino or Frappucchino marketing substitute.

Calling online literature 'the democratization of literature' is like petting your child on the head when they draw the big picture of the lady with the cookie dress smiling and winking through the slit 2d eyes that you remain hopeful your child will learn to render correctly throughout the years of his schooling, the picture that you leave on the fridge until the new pizza coupons come. At night when the son stays in the bathroom too long teaching himself to touch himself you will knock that much harder on the door to get him to not make scabs. In your own bathroom you eat the sandwich while your wife is in the bed wearing the quim bathrobe.

Online literature wants an auction.

''Online' ''literature'''

Roberto Bolano's real name is Fred Allen. He founded a web journal called Peas and Winkies which published on a monthly basis in columnar format and preferred to save the issues of the work all on one index page saved as .htm rather than .html. The journal encouraged lengthy bios and headshots and resulted in the sales sums of funds used in part to film Back to the Future 3, in which Johnny Cash also makes an unnamed and unrecognizable cameo appearance. Marketing the right place at the right time decision yance makes the art I found while running in the ditch street the other day when it was still warm something someone will hide from when I fold it into the ninja star.

Bill Hicks indirectly prophesizing the state of the state of something of what in the hell I'm not talking about in the above a little, I mean really:

and shit, damn, even maybe more so here, in a totally different way:

I feel really sad today, in a completely antiseptic and self-contained googoo way.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

adam robinson said 'that man has the conch'

I feel more than slightly insane today. I have been feeling insane a lot lately. I don't know what insane means except that maybe I feel like I am about to burst through my sskin. That's ok.

You can read the new Lamination Colony and then just by commenting on one of the pieces here win a free copy of Diana George's amazing DISCIPLINES from Noemi Pres. It's a really great short collection. Comment it up.

The verdict on at least the next few months of Lamination Colony is now a thing: I am more than super-excited to announce that the next issue will be guest edited by one of my favorite people in books or elsewhere, MICHAEL KIMBALL, author of, among other things, the amazing Dear Everybody (which, if you haven't checked it out yet, I'm not sure where you've been).

Michael will be reading open subs sent in the usual way to the Lamination Colony inbox until Feb 15. He is looking for writing that is "exciting in any way." I am really excited to see what he does with it. So submissions are now reopen, though it may not yet be reflected on the site. Send some new new.

I am thinking 09 might be a year of guest editing or other shifts of strange, we will see.

EVER proofs are 90% finalized, and hopefully will be green-lit tomorrow. Thanks again to everyone who has preordered, it has been really wonderful.

Other brief notes condensed:

1. I saw 'Synedoche New York' a second time, and it really really sucked. Once you can anticipate the good parts the bullshit of it really shines through.
2. Retconned has been Atlanta's best kept secret in music for about 8 years now, maybe more. A one man band/programmer/oddity, he pretty much predicted/invented several styles of music popular today way before the others who made it popular, including elements of glitch, pop, robot noise, no wave, and computer. If you like the Dirty Projectors or some shit, Retconned is real. (You can download his most recent for free: here.
3. I made a list of 100 the other day. 100 children. I hope it does not become habit. Maybe I hope it becomes habit.
4. Novels and stories and etc. I don't know. I need last December's brain back a little.
5. Favorite google from today ending here: 'why does a straight guy show me his dick at the urinal'

Monday, December 15, 2008

Lamination Colony: 2x issue Winter 08/09

The new update of LAMINATION COLONY is now live, a double issue for the cold season, and the last of the current incarnation of the site.

It is the Masta Killa and the GZA both at once I believe, and is packed to the fat fuck gills for all of rutting, including new joints by:


This is probably the most varied and variant in tone issue I have put together. There is a lot of new things being done, some that I spent several days thinking about what was going on in them, a lot of new and other to think about I think.

It also contains a recommended reading list from randomly selected contributors from past and present, as well as new known mouths ie: PETER MARKUS, MICHAEL KIMBALL, KEVIN SAMPSELL, EUGENE LIM, ROBERT LOPEZ, ROY KESEY, KRISTINA BORN, and myself, adding in time for your holiday season wanting to extend the wanting into further months therefore disrupting brain strength in want of exposing your gash to your gash.

This will be the last issue most likely of the current incarnation of the site. I already have some interesting ideas I think for where it will go from here. Will continue to publish new weird works etc., just in a different and hopefully more brain damaging format. More on that later.

For now, please, enjoy, blog, shout, spread the word, laugh?

Friday, December 12, 2008

someone in the other room has said 'i would like to speak to an agent' into the phone at least 30 times literally in the last 3 minutes

Scott Garson blogged about a maybe interesting, maybe controversial thing that happened involving me over at HTML Giant.

I have no further comment.

I got a really amazing rej. letter from one of the book institutions I hold highest of high. It is nice when such a letter can feel like holding light rather than just an end to a thread. I feel high off it some.

I am right now reading Coleman Dowell's ISLAND PEOPLE, based on Eugene Lim saying somewhere that is his favorite, or at least among his favorites, book. I've been reading a lot of short novels lately and really wanted to get into something longer. This book is only 300 pp but so so so fucking rich and full of ideas and language, it's like reading something 600 pp by most others. I am 60 pp right now and already have felt my brain switched on by it in a way I haven't felt maybe in a while. Every other graph or so I've had to stop and close the book a little in my hands and think about it, though the language is not obfuscating. It just has power. I think this is the beginning of me getting back into the really long novels, which are my true love. A small book is nice and much more fun to read, but there is something about the long, dense novel that engrosses and takes hold of your life for a while. Of the great long novels I've read (among them, somemy favorites: INFINITE JEST, GRAVITY'S RAINBOW, THE TUNNEL, SUTTREE, THE EXECUTIONER'S SONG) it seems I can remember vividly the days and minutes of the reading of those pages, the carrying, the heft and all, more so than I can with smaller books. The books really come into your life. And I am sounding like a fuck.

Krammer Abrahams picked part of 1 sentence out of many thousands of words or something that I didn't write for his new twitter journal: HeyShortyComeToMyKegPartyDougIsInABadMoodThereAreNachos-

I told Krammer I had written it via methods but really it was not made by me at all. I have been corresponding with a very young person.

The sentence is called ken griffey jr

I preordered Ellen and Brandon's books from Muumuu House yesterday: you should as well, they are going to be fantastic, I am excited about their books and MH as a whole.

I closed subs for Lamination Colony a day or 2 ago for the first time in the 5+ years of the journal. I am about to put together a big double issue, after I finish weeding through the overflowing inbox. After that I don't know what is going to happen. I am either going to have a big format change, or put the baby down, or maybe even keep going as it has been. I'm not sure which, but I think at least I want to spend some time thinking about something new. It is time, for me at least, for something new to happen. How I can make new happen has been on my mind a lot lately. I have some maybe ideas that might burn up into bigger bubbles, or might shit my pants. I don't know. We'll see.

Regardless, there is some other large to semi-large news looming that I am super stoked about. Things.

Monday, December 8, 2008

there is too much light in this damn room

I interviewed Dave Housley for Bookslut

Thanks to JA Tyler for nominating IN THE RAPE YEAR OF THE GHETTO TODDLER THE HOUSES WILL AWAKEN for a Pushcart, I am sure the Pushcart ma'ams will just kiss their fingers when they think about the idea of including a tale of hyperbolic toddler rape in their edition, $$$$$$$. Regardless, the nod is most appreciated.

If you are from the government and are reading this, I can't help it that my blog shows up in google as the top result for so many keyword variations of boy scout porn, it bothers me too.

I have been spending all day every day pretty much editing SCORCH ATLAS, it is almost due. I vastly reorganized the stories into a much better fit and arc with the outside eye of Ryan Call, which helped a lot. After so many times reading the stories I am finally beginning to feel they are done done. Nitpicking though is making me slightly insane. I feel paranoid or that someone is touching the back of my head without me being able to feel it. I feel more excited about the book now than at any other point.

To take breaks from editing SCORCH I have been writing chapters of a 'more normal' book which will eventually turn in on itself most likely and also become fucked' and also editing RICKY'S ANUS, which seems like no kind of relaxation, but it's all I can think to do. Some parts of the book are frightening me but I have been really surprised how little editing has been required beyond the first 20 pp or so when I was still getting revved into the idea. Other than formatting and some things I'm doing with structural punctuation, the sentences are almost exactly as I've wanted. I have sent little pieces here and there to magazines we'll see who vomits on what.

The scene where Ricky finds his grandmother inside his mattress wrapped in hair and proceeds to try to cut her out is particularly vibratory, here is a graph:

The head of Ricky’s cock was eating a plate of spaghetti Ricky had hid from his mother under a false bottom in the nightstand where Ricky had also hidden pictures of the sun, pictures that would unlock the secret room lodged in the Epcot Center if presented at the right hour with the right disease. The years altogether future-coming in one long black nod in Ricky’s blood.

There are maybe 2 current editors in the world who would publish this book, if that maybe, yadda, I may print it on rice paper and open a restaurant where it will be served for all meals. Maybe it should be called RICKY'S BLOOD instead of RICKY'S ANUS.

no fuck that

Hey, that's neat Blake. We think that's really swell Blake. No, Blake, really, totally sweet. You have a doorknob on your flub.

I don't know why my imagination has tended toward such violent sexual imagery this year. Maybe 09 will be about fish and lanyards.

I can't tell you the # of people who have msg'd me recently saying some variation of: I hate everyone.

HTML Giant is a pea's carrot.

If this blog were on TV, I would have a guy walk out from the side of the screen now in a red/white plaid suit coat and a straw hat and do a hand-slappy dance with a campy grin to announce: YOU CAN STILL PREORDER EVER, MY LOVEYS!!!

this year is for the weak

today is not eruptive & i just started
i should have been marquis de sade
though i would have just written instead of having sex at all
and i would have written different books
why is there a christmas tree in here
i am not going to say something negative about making words
i'm pretty sure nobody does anything to deserve anything
i don't believe in racism
except as committed by people who say 'racism'
when will there be something to wear in place of socks
is it okay with you that i said something about racism?
am i going to receive emails now telling me what i've done wrong?
most days i get told what i've done wrong between 3 & 37 times
one thing i am not going to do today is say hi to anybody
all i really want to say are things that people do not want to hear
soon i will write an episode of south park and put it in the mail
why do people want to control things they can not and should not control
what is wrong with when there were no choices
this is not a political statement
hold on i just got an email
OK the email just gave me a new tenacity for life
instead of destroying what i have done i am doing to whittle it down to nil
until from 80000 words i say the one thing that means the least
the thing that makes the clitoris of my deeply deeply destructive inner female stand at attention and vibrate tones against the air
if i had a large horse made out of ham i would climb up on it and ride down the street
and park outside the waffle house and go inside and order ham
i can't stop wondering what happened to that guy that one night when we came out of the movie at 2 AM and there was no one in the building except for some kid with dark dark hair laying on this mushy pedestal in the center of the lobby, we shouted loud into his face and nudged his knee and he did not move, there was no one in any of the other rooms, we left him laying there and got in our car and went home and did not have sex
also what about the night the lights in the enormous church right down the street were turning off and on in sequential order very fast from one window to another, though that night i was alone
that church has quadrupled since then
i am the same size

Thursday, December 4, 2008

what kind of good is the best good if you are going to open the spaghetti do it now i have to be at the sand farm in 15 min & my hair is leaking light

** (people can win a copy of EVER by talking shit here)

Sean Kilpatrick pushes another piece into my top 5 favorites of the year Progress: A Play in _ Acts. I mean, I want to stop talking about the dude, but he won't let me. Such as here is a part from the play that makes me squish ink:

An arm sticks out, aiming a pistol straight up.

CHARACTER A: I'm pregnant.

CHARACTER B: Congratulations. Who's the father?

CHARACTER A: I'll never tell.

CHARACTER B: When you straddle a cannon the whole ghetto perks up.

The gun recedes. Several shots sound.

That's a man, read the rest.

Another recent hero is Brandi Wells. Read her new blog post about a poem she published in her school journal causing a call for censorship. It's a great poem. The poem was also published here at decomP, you have to scroll down: We have been dating so long I feel like I can tell you anything.

Brandi is doing really strong work esp. lately, it makes me happy when I see her new words. The letter from her school reminds me of what school feels like. I thought I missed it. Maybe I do.

I have a big post about the apparent wish for democracy in literature in me coming soon, thinking about it last night kept me up until 630, I thought I would remember what I wanted to say but now I can't remember, I hold my hands in fists when I am sleeping.

Everything is not good. It's ok to be critical.

And it's funny, Ryan and I are just talking about this right now: for all the good you talk about in public, it is the things that are shit talk or are negative that garner the attention. If people didn't like negativity, they would make 100+ comments on the presence of a Kitchen Reading Series. But they don't. What people like is to see other people cut the skin off each other's faces. Me too. Fine.

I am going to figure out what I mean and talk better later.

Why can't the air be made of Mexican food.

Last night finished reading Jesse Ball's forthcoming THE WAY THROUGH DOORS, it is magical and filled with doors and tunnels and stories within stories and is exactly what I needed to read. My review will be coming out in Spring but for now let me say that this book is important and new and old and beautiful and many things, and if you have liked anything of Jesse's before, or like Calvino or Marquez, you are going to be in for it.

There is a definitive thread in the book that says something on par with the idea that: 'Nothing is incidental.' There is a lot of wild energy and new unraveling and dream terror and old wit and maps and drawings and enchantment and etc. in this book. I can't stop thinking about it.

I heard something today about an unreleased chunk of a large unfinished novel that he had given to a very small lit mag to be published right before his death will be coming out early next year. Knowing that is out there and coming makes me feel like I can sit up in this room and listen to the humidifier and put my socks on when my feet are cold.

Let's always be talking about something else.

Like my 3 favorite google searches ending here today:

1. keeping people from touching your infant
2. pink ball in dog's vulva
3. poems about who gives a shit about a little girl

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

'Yo mammy and yo pops, man, they bout to find yo body'

Rauan Klassnik, author of the really brutal and beautiful HOLY LAND, just posted a long process-oriented interview with me about EVER, including 'Physics, The Universe, Charles Simic, Cormac McCarthy, Tea or Coffee' and shit. Ron also interspersed some critical thinking on the book's text as well as some quoted sections and etc. His questions were really on point.

I think Ron is the first person besides Derek and those who blurbed who has read the book, excluding Peter and 2 or 3 who saw a really early draft. Thanks to Ron for the really nice words, and for the interview. Please have a peek.

And then (inhale), you can still buy EVER for $12 plus a buck and a half for shipping, which will come with free new life and maybe a cheat code for Arkanoid and some other things.

If anyone else is interested in doing an early review or other, I can probably get you a pdf version to checkout. Other press people please drop me a line for paper version when it arrives.

Thanks again to everyone who has checked it out so far, the response has been really nice for just a few days on the block.

If you feel like getting one of the best deals I've ever seen on amazing books Dalkey is doing a huge amazing sale. I already spent $60. If I didn't already own a huge portion of their catalog I would probably have done the 20 books for $110 twice. Amazing.

For $60 including shipping I got:

Geometric Regional Novel by Gert Jonke
Homage to Czerny: Studies in Virtuoso Technique by Gert Jonke
Pigeon Post by Dumitru Tsepeneag
The Bathroom by Toussaint
The Complete Butcher’s Tales by Rikki Ducornet
Temple of Texts by Gass
The Conversions by Harry Mathews
Romancer Erector by Diane Williams
The Obstacles by Eloy Urroz
The Mirror in the Well by Marcom

They have also released some of my favorite books ever, including The Tunnel, Magnetic Field(s), several of Markson's, Ben Marcus, the new Stanley Crawford rereleases, Nightwork, Coover, Barthelme, Elkin (oh god I should fill in my Elkin gap: THE MAGIC KINGDOM is one of the all time greats). Just too much.

I read the first half of Jesse Ball's THE WAY THROUGH DOORS last night. It is utterly insane. Sort of like IF ON A WINTER'S NIGHT A TRAVELER if it had been written on even less sleep. Be excited for it.

twitter is actually kind of calming

Monday, December 1, 2008

'Ejaculation is a waste of valuable resources.'

Thanks to everyone who has preordered EVER so far. I've been really happy about the first two days. The more that get preordered I think the more I will make to include in the free shit, which I will be telling more of soon. Very awesome, anyway, that folks have bothered.

Please check out & order EVER. I am going to keep saying that for a while, bear with me.

God help me I just joined twitter

What text by Zizek should I read? What is his 'most important' work, or at least the one I might like the best? I have always meant to read a full book but in looking at them I find it hard to know which I would most respond to. Comments?

This morning I woke up with 'I saw myself / What were you doing' written on my hand, though it wasn't there when I went to sleep and I don't remember writing it during the night.

My sleeplessness is ramping up again, I sleep two hours and want to get up. I don't. I don't know why.

Here is Derek's book trailer, for those who haven't seen it:

If anyone has readings in the southeast or northeast and would have me for a reading, please email me also. I have some dates set up in NYC, Baltimore, pending Michigan, pending Northampton, Chicago for AWP, and some others pending. I would love to do a bunch.

Awesome website for Shane Jones's LIGHT BOXES

I think I am beginning to give up. No negatives today, despite Rod Stewart coming through the damn wall.

God I can't stand brass instruments.

I think I have said 'fuck america' out loud at least 20 times today, I'm not sure why.

I am going to read Jesse Ball's new book tonight maybe. I have been waiting for the right time.

We saw LET THE RIGHT ONE IN, a new Swedish vampire movie: it does a really good job of not overburdening the idea of vampires, and making it something that could fit into the world, which makes it that much more palpable and invoking than the typical retardation of normal vampire films. The shots are really good, there is a bed explosion, there is child violence and blood and Morse code, this is a horror movie I can get behind.

Ryan Call just saved my mind.