Friday, January 21, 2011

a surprising masterwork of total mediocrity

After the onslaught of Creepy Old Men last night, I'm thankful that the new student worker shares a similar sense of humor in regards to matters of the geopolitical. I also began working longhand on some sections of what will probably be my very own literary work with the timetable of Chinese Democracy, since at the very least Kevin Shields created a masterpiece of a record before eternally shelving that lost My Bloody Valentine followup and I have not done so.

I've got notebooks dug out from the parents' house last weekend full of jottings of conversations and stories from my senior year onward, that I might dig back into. Much of it was terrible writing of the quick documentation variety, capturing trivial conversations and awkward social dynamics for posterity that I would have forgotten otherwise.

There's some splice and dice action so far, mixing fresh prose with reworked other writings that have seemed to work decently upon reading. It's not great literature but it's not total trash. I'm just hoping that it can be something solid and believable. I'm trying to render details and not waste words, piling on layers of description and emotion, calling to mind the smallest details like album track listenings and coffee mug sayings and the patterns of 1970s linoleum.

Few writers have tackled this territory, with its strange culture of its own, and I want to do it justice in a way that's neither sentimental nor cruel. Too much fiction does that already, and I don't want to do it too.

3 comments:

Randal Graves said...

When it comes out, will we get a free can of Dr. Pepper?

I'm très heureux that you're working on this.

thatgirl said...

All I wanted was a Pepsi!

Sad that I had to go to Google Translate to comprehend your sentiment.

expect my own version of the Novel From Hell to enter the Inbox of Randal's Purgatorio in the near future.

Anonymous said...

I'm an English major in Oregon where there are 50 applications for every job that opens up. I'm Jewish, somewhat effeminate, and I was fired for assigning "The Sound and the Fury" (at the same time it was on Oprah; a feint to get the admins off my back). My kids were mostly black and poor, and if the system fears what they could accomplish, they're doing a good job boring them. Maya Angelou was the only approved black writer: an inoffensive victim who hangs out with billionaires and writes cheesy poems. The kids couldn't finish "Caged Bird" because she didn't tell anyone about being molested (one said it explained why she went to church with her legs covered in vaseline; I felt a high-five was in order. I guess I broke a cardinal rule: black humor is a gift, appearing to celebrate cruelty was ugly. "All you Jewish guys got soft pretty hands." Certain of the boys loved to score on me being a Jew, which was more South Park's influence than Al Sharpton's. My being an authority figure was what made it okay, and allowing their free speech made me a little bit okay. First-year teachers risk becoming doormats; I was picky about spelling and banned "nigga" and "bitch" during class; coming late meant you spent lunch with me in the library, and I never had to send one kid to the VP or detention.