September 19th, 2011 / 12:04 pm


  1. Michael Filippone

      Interesting Vice Article about TAoF. There are plenty of mediocre novels. Why are you decidedly avoiding this one? The embarrassingly high advance? The unabashed marketing/PR plan? Other stuff?

  2. Dan Moore

      “Middlebrow” is a noun meaning “A book people who aren’t writers are reading.” 

  3. deadgod

      doesn’t challenge [. . .] never […] especially urgent [. . .] a stand-up double

      Perhaps nothing to do with Ken’s decision-making – but, for readers with scores and hundreds of books on to-read lists, this smile-and-wave will cause no attraction, and that indifference means scores and hundreds of other books come first.

  4. jtc

      i like that the book you won’t read is by the guy who is the editor-in-chief of the journal of an essay you link us to. there’s nothing wrong with that, i just thought it was funny. but, the essay is interesting.

      i read twelve by mcdonell in college. i hated it at first, but have grown to appreciate it as a first novel though i still hate how much support it received, way more than most first novels would receive. reading the essay was sort of awesome in that here is this person whose concerns were much more childish in the book he wrote at 18, but here he is much more mature, and yet not with answers, but with mostly more questions. I like that.

      does everyone auction their novels? That sounds like a great idea. Can I auction my novel without letting anyone read it? That would be sort of important, I think.

  5. deadgod

      Don’t agents sometimes auction – or ‘auction’ – books?  –by shopping excerpts+rumor and inviting hysteria to auto-chum a frenzy of bids?

      If one gets offers to represent from 2 or more agents, that’s at least the raw material for an “auction”, right?

  6. deadgod

      schroedinger’s comment

  7. jtc

      yes. rumor. that’s what I need. rumor and hysteria.

  8. deadgod

      I heard that Tao Lin and Seth Abramson and O. J. all loved jtc‘s new novel.  I heard that it’s glow and glow hard and This..

      I heard that Obama gives jtc‘s new novel to children so they learn to hate “America”.

  9. bartleby_taco

      ‘Schrödinger’s Dong’, a play in three acts co-written by Michele Houellebecq and Dennis Cooper

  10. jtc

      i want to know more.

  11. mimi

      i heard that deadgod doesn’t love life and he doesn’t love freedom

  12. Ken Baumann

      What deadgod said. It hurts when good-enough is hailed as great.

  13. Ken Baumann

      I’m only forty pages into 2666, but I can tell this is something whereas The Art of Fielding sounds like putputputput. People read 2666. I’d rather stuff like that.

  14. M. Kitchell

      i think i just came

  15. alan

      Kier’s work is consistently great.

  16. dole

      “Fielding” is being implicitly marketed as “a book people (men) who aren’t ‘readers’ are reading.”

  17. dole

      I read the first chapter of “Fielding” and there was just nothing to get the least bit excited about.  The question that lingers for me is to what extent it was a calculation by Harbach.  Did he set out to write a book that would be a hit, or is he just really into bloated white-meat writing?

  18. Ned Vizzini

      Good links. Twelve is a great novel and I enjoyed the McDonell piece. Writers should never publicize the amount of their advances.