11. The “Star Whackers” are a group of assassins who hunt down and kill Hollywood celebrities. Q: Where do we donate?
2. Before her cure, she was holed up in her château dictating one much-worked-on line a day to Andréa, who would type it up. Then they would start uncorking cheap Bordeaux and she’d drink two glasses, vomit, then continue on till she’d drunk as many as nine liters and would pass out. She could no longer walk, or scarcely. She said she drank because she knew God did not exist. Her very sympathetic doctor would visit her almost daily and offer to take her to the hospital, but only if she wanted to live. She seemed undecided for a long time but at last she opted for life since she was determined to finish a book that she’d already started and was very keen about.
1414. Soft Skull Press is sort of dead, I guess.
9. The correct number of beer (s) to drink before a public reading? (You are reading.)
5. I didn’t know The S.C.U.M (Society for Cutting Up Men) manifesto was online. It is. Here you go:
It is now technically feasible to reproduce without the aid of males (or, for that matter, females) and to produce only females. We must begin immediately to do so.
Women, in other words, don’t have penis envy; men have pussy envy.
SCUM will couple-bust — barge into mixed (male-female) couples, wherever they are, and bust them up.
I’m in the midst of a move, which has reminded me how much I hate moving, the constant sense of inventory, the where-should-this-go, the box that contains socks and a spatula and that really important piece of paper that I won’t find, ever. Almost all of my books are still boxed up, but I’ve been keeping in my purse, on my person, Janice Shapiro’s debut collection just out from Soft Skull. These stories have a narrative fluency I admire (reflecting, I’d wager, Shapiro’s screenwriting background). Overall, they’re sure-footed in both their pacing and their prose, and the book itself, as a collection, feels thematically and tonally right–a true collection, and not just an assemblage of work. Shapiro’s women, as subjects and objects, are likable and funny, and she handles their neuroses, compulsions, and heartaches with a deft hand. What I have appreciated most about Bummer this week is how it has entertained me, offered levity and tenderness without demanding anything more than that I grin and feel. This book shows up without showing off.
Continue reading “BUMMER and other stories, by Janice Shapiro”
Some old news was posted at Soft Skull in February, but thought I’d mention it today to officially mark Richard Nash’s leaving Soft Skull Press.
Thanks for everyone out there for making Soft Skull what it is, above all the readers and writers whom we exist to serve and connect, along with my colleagues, paid and unpaid (!), who’ve put in vast amounts of hours, creativity, and intensity in order to bring those writers and readers together to create this thing we call culture.
Follow Nash online on his blog for post-Soft Skull activities.