I’m not sure how many people know this already, but “Justin Taylor” is–among other things–also the name of a fictional character from the now-defunct TV show Queer as Folk. What’s NOT defunct is the stream of fan-fiction concerning Justin’s relationship with Brian Kinney. There’s tons of it being produced and published, almost entirely on Livejournal. Often times they move the characters into new environments/situations/worlds, such as a sci-fi-ish future or else, as in today’s offering, a high school that’s also somehow “like Muppet Babies.” In the grand tradition of slashfiction, all of this *ahem* literature is known by the collective title of Brian/Justin fiction, or, simply–and perfectly, am I right?–BJ fic. How do I know all this? Uh, own-name Google alert–anybody? Here’s an extract from chapter two of QAF Babies (click anywhere to get swept away to QAFland):
Then he stops leaning on his hand and tilts his head. He asks, in a sultry voice (or so I think), “What’s your real name, Sunshine?”
I smile. “Justin. Justin Taylor.”
He repeats slowly, “Justin Taylor.” My name has never sounded sexier.
I laugh uncomfortably and then whisper (Mrs. Newman had already shot us a couple warning looks), “You never answered my first question.”
In response, he asks playfully, “Why shouldn’t I take home ec? Where else will I learn how to cook my man a hearty meal, balance his checkbook, care for all our adopted babies, and darn his socks?”
I stare at him blankly. After a minute or two, he chuckles. “Maybe I just want to ogle your hot ass as you bend over to put cookies in the oven…”
Of course there’s Barthelme — and Lish, and Brautigan, and Markson — these writers are not knee-jerk ambivalent with form, but better, curious about its malleability. They always nodded to the past, full circle. A hot rating is likely, if not inevitable, but what concerns me more is that pile of rubber bands, the Grateful Dead box set, and the array of book marks. Justin, please don’t tell me you’re one of those bookish hipster kids who wear rubber bands like a bracelet. If those function any way as cock rings, congratulations, your girth is unyielding. I had to google St. Mark’s Bookshop and it’s a pleasure imagining you perusing the shelves (we all love that glue and pulp smell) but must you take a complimentary bookmark every single time? Or are those testament to each book you bought there? As for the Grateful Dead — to borrow a line from my mother whenever she heard Motley Crue coming out of my room, “I can smell them from here.” Free love is okay, free drugs is probably better, but these guys were just annoying. I do give Justin props for boldly fracturing his rubber band bracelet image. Should we ever see Justin with a beard, we’ll know that shit ain’t Walt Whitman. Nah, it’s positively Haight Street. How about this for a c/o Lish title: Will you please take a shower, please?
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Haut or not / 16 Comments
March 30th, 2009 / 1:47 pm
Justin, get your ass back to HTMLGiant and get to work.
(Our own Justin Taylor has a post up at Dennis Cooper’s blog, The Weaklings, about X-ing Books.)
(A prize package to anyone who can correctly guess the significance of the image on top of this post. Books and stuff.)
Author News / 8 Comments
March 5th, 2009 / 8:41 pm