Jonathan Baumbach at Maud Newton
I just finished reading this post by Jonathan Baumbach over at Maud Newton’s blog. He talks a little about the founding of FC(2) and then mentions his surprise at how long the collective has lasted. Originally, he had meant for the alternative press to be a ‘stopgap action in a period of emergency.’ He writes though that his assessment of the situation back then was maybe too optimistic, which explains, perhaps, why FC2 has continued so long. I hadn’t realized that the original collective was meant only as a temporary fix, to ‘jostle the publishing establishment into taking more chances with work that was out on the edge.’ But as time passed, Baumbach says, the industry turned more conservative in its tastes, and FC2 was needed more than ever.
Here’s a tiny bit more from the post:
Originality tends to generate difficulty in that it breaks faith with expectation, undermines the prevailing verities of last season’s fashion. Originality, by definition, takes us by surprise.
Commercial publishing tends to court literary work that is a thinly disguised variation on the recognizably artful — last year’s award winner tricked out to seem at once new and safely familiar.
Thanks to Maud Newton for posting this.