Monday, September 28, 2009

Scorch Atlas Contest

The always very kind Jereme Dean has purchased a few copies of Scorch Atlas for me to give away. These, if you wish, will come as damaged copies like from the preorder period, bloody or waterlogged or otherwise chunked to bits (but readable), which are now no longer available anywhere but here.

So, two copies to give away (a third copy will be given away later this or next week on my blog), and entry is simple:

Name the book you would most like to see beaten into shit and destroyed for all of time, and briefly why.

If you don't ever wish a book would be destroyed because you are not that kind of person, tell me why you are not that kind of person.

Contest will run until Thursday morning when a winner will be picked (based on which answers I like the most), copies will be trashed, and mailed.

Thanks again to Jereme for the support and the fun.



** PS: In the latest edition of the Ninth Letter podcast, a reading of 'The Gown from Mother's Stomach' spoken by Jennifer Bradford.

*** PPS: The SA remix ebook is very very nearly done and should go live any day now.

27 comments:

daniel bailey said...

i would like to see "the turn of the screw" by henry james beat to shit because i had to read that for an undergrad class, read it, hated it, could not make sense of james' long-ass winding sentences that start one place and end in a completely place, making it so that i had to reread every sentence, knowing that i had to write a ten-page paper about the book, only to find out that i could pick a different book to write a paper about (i chose "moby dick"). this is the only book i've every felt so strongly about.

Brandi Wells said...

I would like to see the sparknotes for Dracula beat to shit. I read Dracula for a film/lit class and the day before the test our professor said we could "skip the boring parts." Then in an awful polish accent that I can't understand, he told us which parts were boring. After taking the test I feel pretty sure I could have just read the sparknotes and been okay. Apparently most of the class just read the sparknotes. Fuck sparknotes. Fuck his polish ass with sparknotes.

magick mike said...

Drunk, at a friends party one night, I came across a copy of the notorious tucker max's I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell. I asked her why she had a copy of it, and she responded that this dude had left it at her place. I didn't particularly like the dude, and after working at Borders for two years and selling something like 40 copies to the lowest-common-denominator "bros" imaginable, I immediately took the book, tore it in half, continued to tear it in half, dumped it into the toilet, lit it on fire, put the fire out, and put it in her trashcan. "Bro" culture really doesn't need anything to perpetuate it, and as that book serves as a perfectly potent signifier for everything that is wrong with "bro" culture, I would actually love to do the exact same thing to every copy of the book in existence, personally.

ryan call said...

i would like to see daniel baileys 'the drunk sonnets,' which is forthcoming from magic helicopter press and can be preordered now, beat to shit because he woul dlike to see 'the turn of the screw' beat to shit, which i liked reading in undergrad. nobody fucks with henry james.

Mel Bosworth said...

there is no book i would like to see destroyed for all time because every book has a purpose even if that purpose is to remind us that shitty books exist and there are better things to read. all subjective anyway. HOWEVER, there are several books I would like to see beaten, and joyce's finnegan's wake is at the top of my list. yes, the man is an eye-patch wearing dead genius, sure, but i've carried the book with me for years now and i've attempted and toyed to read, and what i've learned is that true clarity ain't gonna happen (at least not for me, not in this lifetime) and that the "skeleton key" books and the analysis of Robert Anton Wilson in Coincidance has told me all i'll ever need to know and understand about finnegan's wake without ever truly reading through the entire thing. yes, i would like to see that book stomped, beaten, pooped on, and then hung. then i'd like to watch modern day scholars write about that, then i'd like to have them beaten too. scorch atlas.

Sabra Embury said...

I know it sucks to say but the Great Gatsby was one of those things that made me start skipping classes in high school. It made reading feel tedious. But I'd only want it destroyed if it could be resurrected into a zombie time traveling Gatsby. That way it would've have an infectious way of making me want to read more back when I'd met it with the opposite effect. I already have a copy of Scorch Atlas. It just felt good to hate on the Gatsby a little.

jereme said...

i wonder if there is a complete listing of all books burned by hitler.

i bet those book bonfires felt weird.

all that negative energy.

anyways, i suggest all winners get the book beat up like old donkey pussy.

it really does add to the charm.

the pages are made of this weird material and morph into their own.

the words in the book are genius but i don't really need mention such things.

yall should know that, bitches.

jereme said...

p.s. i would like to see all psychology and philosophy books burned, the human races minds blanked and see what weird shit we come up with on our own.

daniel bailey said...

ryan call's answer is awesome.

* said...

I would like to witness the destruction of New Introductory Lectures, by Sigmund Freud, for reasons that I have long repressed.

Erin said...

The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger is like Drew Barrymore. It runs around saying "Oh I'm such a nerd, I'm so nerdy!" But that's complete bullshit, because it's in Cover Girl ads and blockbuster movies and probably wipes its ass with twenty dollar bills, some of which it got from actual nerds.

I would like to see The Time Traveler's Wife beaten until it finally admits that it's just another one of the boring cool kids, trying to be a big fish in the nerd pond.

DJ Berndt said...

I would like to see Hiroshima by John Hersey destroyed because, well... think about it.

Darby said...

I don't think acting upon a book with the intent of destruction is any more significant than leaving a book on a shelf and not reading it. I am in the process of destroying millions of books as I write this. Of these, if I knew which one I wanted destroyed the most, it wouldn't be destroyed.

gena said...

i think all books should be destroyed because that would lead to more fucking which would lead to more people which would lead to the apocalypse which would lead to me saying yay!

Ross Brighton said...

I would like to see Plato's republic destroyed, so I could do the "revenge of the poets" dance (which probably looks like a monkey having a seizure).

Jack Boettcher said...

The honest answer: doing some back research for this, I see that I'm already halfway there - the former owners of the domain name poetry.com have gone out of business and are no longer publishing vanity anthologies. However, surely there are still some of those old anthologies out there, and probably I have some "poetry" I wrote in middle school in one of them (if you sent something to their site, you were put in one of the books, right? or did they only put you in if you ordered one? - okay, Wikipedia says not, so I guess I'm probably in one called Tranquil Futility next to a Cracker Barrel rocking chair somewhere). In any case, assuming I'm in there, I want Tranquil Futility beaten to shit and then I want the particles in that thing blown to the far edges of the universe. No one on earth needs to read my poems about frigid memories and October elegies, though I'd probably take a look at them one more time before hitting the destructo button, the same way anyone slows and stares at highway wreckage. There is the outside chance that some really good extraterrestrial physicists could translate the cosmic radiation from the blast back into the poetry.com anthology, and take it for the pinnacle of our civilization, but fear and shame would make me take that risk. Even as it's a little sad to have to pick a book including my own creation among all books and creations, it feels good to finally admit all this.

*footnote/caveat: if I happened to be in the anthology containing the original early Flarf experiments with poetry.com's willingness to publish anything, then I guess I would willingly fall into disrepute, because that should continue to exist.

Reynard said...

atlas shrugged

because ayn rand was a succubus

& you know ... atlases

if you and ayn rand walked in a bar she'd order an atlas shrugged & you'd turn to her & say, to the bartender, i'll have mine scorched & then you'd reach up, caressing her chin soft as brittle bone & rip the bottom part of her jaw off

Daniel Powell said...

I'd like to see Catcher In the Rye destroyed because it's so sAfeLy LiTerArY.

Justin Rands said...

I'd like all these comments to be printed out (one comment = one page) and perfect bound into a small chapbook, and then beat to fuck, leaving me as the only one left, because there is no way I can win this contest after this many great responses.

adam coates said...

120 days of sodom
for the awkward moment when you finally have to admit you just sexually gratified a book

Ryland Death said...

I would destroy all the poetry by Billy Corgan and Jewel.

One might ask, "Ryland Death, aren't these many books by two different authors?" They're not. Billy Corgan and Jewel are the twin manifestations in our plane of existence of the unholy demon Bicorgewel. One is its mouth, the other its ass, out of which it vomits and shits forth the pestilential refuse of Hell as part of a Satanic conspiracy to poison and destroy God's terrestrial creation.

The poems of Billy Corgan and Jewel constitute a collective violation of natural law and constitute a direct assault against the divine order of the universe.

Mark Leidner said...

i'd like to personally route out and destroy (like jedi) every last remaining copy of 'ever' to see if it was powerful enough to somehow burn through its own non-existence a second time, and weakly reappear in the bark of the various trees and in cracks along various sidewalks and streets, and then again more forcefully in the fingerprints and irises and bright, new face-marring birthmarks of all the babies born the day after the last copy has been destroyed

Colin said...

Looks like the Open ID is giving me some flak, so I'll try it this way:

I'd like to see Michael Ondaatje's The English Patient get Jerry Springer'ed. I know, it's an award winner, was even turned into a movie (what every book wants to be when it grows up, right?), but there's a description on page one about the English patient's penis "sleeping like a sea horse" that made it painfully (and awkwardly) clear that I would not like this book. I finished it, complaining about the dialogue and the prose, but I knew it was the sea horse penis line tainting my opinion. I still remember this description almost a decade later and it still bothers me. I don’t know why, but it does. I could try rereading The English Patient, but I think I'd trip over that sea horse penis line again and be left in a foul mood, so sorry, Ondaatje, Big Steve ain't gonna hold back the masses any longer.

I also thought of throwing Jewel's poetry to the fists, so if there are two of us independently thinking her work, out of all the wretched books in the land, should be the one plundered, that's quite the demerit. It's not just her vague, teenage-girl-diary-cum-poem method that rubs me the wrong way; it's that her book is one of the most popular poetry books of the last decade. All this chatter about rainbows of love and intertwining souls—she may know what she's talking about, but no one else does.

So get the pitchforks! Get the fire!

Anonymous said...

Anything by Chuck Palahniuk, because his books all seem to me to be borderline good/bad. I think a book should strive to be terribly good (DeLillo) or deliciously bad (Dan Brown). Anything in between will not work for me.


- Trent England

Sabra Embury said...

I remember once Updike was drunk and telling me while playing with his scrotch, he was all: I took that granny and fed her my nooge and then she spit it in my ear and then we went to bingo drenched in what could only be a hard shell chrysalis of dry mucus...

Oops, that was another contest. Sorry.

:)

BLAKE BUTLER said...

thanks to everybody for entering.

i couldnt decide among so much greatness so i put my favorite entries names in a hat and pulled them out

the two winners are

brandi wells and reynard

email me yo addresses for dat books

thanks again to jereme for the powermove

Ryland Death said...

Curses. Beaten by a hat.

This is like the time that I was cockblocked because this girl's husband decided to come home early with a pizza.