Twilight of the Word

22 August 2019 | Diary

I’m reading the Edgeworks edition of The Harlan Ellison Hornbook. It probably has more front matter (introductions, dedications, author’s notes, copyright declarations, etc.) than any book I’ve ever seen. That’s if we don’t consider Tristram Shandy to be an entire novel of front matter or indeed The Book of Prefaces to be, well, a book […]

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A Memorable Sandwich

16 August 2019 | Diary

Side by side this evening, Samara reads Samuel Pepys while I read Ongoingness: The End of a Diary by Sarah Manguso. Manguso: To write a diary is to make a series of choices about what to omit, what to forget. A memorable sandwich, an unmemorable flight of stairs. A memorable bit of conversation surrounded by […]

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Fanboy Blues

04 August 2019 | Diary

I’m reading the published diaries of a writer whose work I love dearly. Twelve years in, he’s not once written an entry on my birthday. I mention this to my wife. “It’s because he hates you,” she says.

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Woodland Dirtybag

26 July 2019 | Diary

Man alive, what a book. I’m all shook up. My Elvis Blackout by Simon Crump, handed to me as if it were a woodland dirtybag, by my good friend unclef, is a novel about the King of Rock and Roll. Well, sort of. It’s properly hilarious, experimental and odd. The violence that characterises the book […]

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Willkommen im Dschungel

22 July 2019 | Diary

Kids! Do yourself a favour and read Chapter Six of Only Americans Burn in Hell by Jarett Kobek. It’s just so much fun that it will improve your day if not your whole week. Go out for a walk and get it from the library. Read the entire novel if you want to, but Chapter […]

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