soffi stiassni

Reviews & Snippets

Former Tao Lin Intern Reviews Current Tao Lin Novel

Former Tao Lin Intern Reviews Current Tao Lin Novel

My good friend, Soffi Stiassni, formerly of the Tao Lin Internship Program, and also an alumna of this site, has reviewed her ex-boss’s new novella. Now, I know a lot of people feel like we’ve been linking to Tao-related and SFAA-related stuff too much. Well, go fuck yourselves. Seriously.

Essentially, the reader of “Shoplifting from American Apparel” is a voyeur, preying upon characters who are voyeurs. Beneath a patina of isolation and ennui the innocence of these characters remains. They are intact, untouched, half members of the world at large.

October 17th, 2009 / 2:52 am


[a guest post by our erstwhile friend & former colleague, Soffi Stiassni]

The New Yorker’s legacy of cartoon and caricature is not limited to anecdotal fodder about the Berkshires. In the March 9th Life and Letters feature on David Foster Wallace the eulogized writer is remembered with words by D. T. Max, and an eloquent portrait by Philip Burke. This frontal facing portrait is a caricature of photographer Nancy Crampton’s iconic shot of Wallace, featured in her book, “Writers: Photographs.” The book is a compilation of portraits and accompanying text from a wide array of novelists, poets, and people of the pen, from Lorrie Moore to Chinua Achebe. Sitters are pictured with pets (George Plimpton with cat and Cheever with dog), with cigarette (WH Auden and Anne Sexton), in the country and about town,  and in several cases, seated before a rather dour gray studio backdrop, reminiscent of a high school yearbook photos. Wallace is one of the writers photographed against this unceremonious backdrop; he sits, arms crossed,  backwards in the wooden chair, and dons a cut off Pomona College sweatshirt and the scratchy  beginnings of a beard. He is sans infamous bandanna, which Burke chose to include in his rendering. To  sit for a yearbook photo, particularly a senior portrait, can be the worry of an entire August. Though these photos often make their way to living room mantels and family mailers, they are very much the most public image one presents to themselves. Quite different than a candid snapshot which might accidentally reveal latent character, the formal posed portrait is a presentation deliberately selected by the sitter for the benefit of the viewer.


Author Spotlight / 12 Comments
March 19th, 2009 / 8:50 am

Welcome the New Giant Crew

Soffi and Catherine will kick yr ass

Soffi and Catherine will kick yr ass

I know you hate to see us break up the 90% sausage party. The truth is we’ve been trying for a while now to bring a more feminine presence to this onslaught of often rude/crude dudism, but, well, girls don’t like us? Or if they do, they certainly don’t want to make it public. We each had to promise Kendra our first born before she came on board, but now those are all eaten up.

Thankfully, in the face of such dire straits, two lovely Female bloggers have now agreed to strap on their rubber suits and come swim in HTML Giant fun pool. It might be belated, but now Kendra has someone to whisper to behind her hand when we start acting like Jocks. Not that our women might not act like jocks sometimes. They’ll probably box our ears and rub our heads in the dirt. But only because they are both rad and excellent women. And they are here to help us keep it real.

So please welcome Soffi Stiassni and Catherine Lacey to the HTML Giant team.

We’re excited. Other things are going to keep changing and expanding. And no worries about us not being sassy or weird or ridiculous a lot of the time. That just comes naturally. But do look for the new sleek, ripped out 2.0 version of Giant coming hopefully before the year’s out. In the meantime, let’s have fun and spread some creation.

Web Hype / 34 Comments
November 20th, 2008 / 2:07 pm