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Thursday, April 30, 2015

Another review of NVSQVAM... this time by one of my favorite book bloggers.

I READ ODD BOOKS has reviewed NVSQVAM! What an honor; I love Anita Dalton's taste and writing style.

Slowly but surely, a microscopic proportion of the population is becoming intrigued by the trials and fears and massive character defects (but don't we all have them?) of my protagonist (and oh does he agonize), Lester Reichartsen, poster boy for the new lost generation. We fell through the cracks so we're slowly making more cracks, because "fuck you" still feels so good to say. (And what other revenge are we capable of getting?)

Most important, Anita Dalton thinks my book is funny, and gettin' the laffs is exactly why I went through the millions of hours of head-wringing it took to write the damn thing. I really should have listened to my father and become a stand-up comedian.

Here's the link:

And here are a couple of choice excerpts:

The other reason to read it is because it is so very funny.  Seriously, Sterzinger has the sort of intelligent, acerbic wit that I imagined I had back when I was a drunk.
Though I find Lester largely irritating and unlikeable, he is not unique in his passive, seething uselessness.  Jesus, so many young people born to baby boomer parents ended up like this.  Almost all of us were latch-key kids, the post-Reagan economic state seemed hopeless, and we had Pearl Jam running across the stage in baggy shorts making millions of dollars moaning about their mothers, which was sort of understandable because so many of us were raised in divorced, single-parent, female-headed households. Some young men raised in such an environment felt buffeted by fate, as if everything they wanted would never happen and they entered a post-collegiate life with no idea what to do next.
The entire section wherein Lester, Evelyn and Martin visit family over the Christmas holidays is just excruciating and hilarious.  There’s too damn much to reproduce here so I consider that long section to be the price of admission for this book.

As Dalton notes, the current price of admission for the ebook is a mere $2.99, so pleez click here...

Monday, April 27, 2015

Spreading the Bad Word

Dear Friends, Acquaintances, People Who Might Secretly Want to Kill Us, and Potential Partners in Scum and Villainy:

Hello there! This is Rachel Haywire and Ann Sterzinger. Today—Monday, April 27, 2015—is we announce our new partnership as co-editors of TRIGGER WARNING, the webzine that’s here to remind everyone that reality hates them.

INSERT CALL TO ACTION, as Bill Burr would say: We’re also relaunching with a brand new issue, and we would most heartily appreciate it if you would help us spread the word, via Facebook, Twitter, Snap-Ass, carrier kitten, or whatever the hell it is the kids are using these days.

TRIGGER WARNING is a cesspool of news, culture, insight porn, art, and stupid, stupid politics, wherein we choose laughs over finger-wagging, misanthropy over team play, reason over righteousness, and fun facts over foaming at the mouth: Let the right wing AND the left wing drop off, and run the motherfucker into the Alps, saith we. Here be the link:

We’re also about to launch a fundraising/revenue generating effort on the strength of our new content, and would be grateful for any help in that eternally-troublesome department of the news and culture bidness as well. We welcome all of you to submit articles, podcasts, or homemade macrame drones should you find the time, and we are working toward the lofty goal of being able to PAY YOU at least a reasonable fraction of what your thoughts and words are worth. Your efforts on our behalf may very well, in other words, serve your own ends in time.

Yours Sincerely,

Rachel and Ann


As of today I'm co-editor of TRIGGER WARNING, a website for radical moderates. My coworker is non other than the uncatgorizable RACHEL HAYWIRE and our M.O. is pissing you all off equally.

For the relaunch issue Rachael and I wrote a half-tongue-in-cheek paean to child abuse:

And I review a book about the history of futility.

Plus other great stuff! Read it and, literally, weep to death laughing.

Thursday, April 23, 2015


James O'Meara reviews BLACK HOUSE ROCKED! By Paul Bingham and Emril Krestle! (And released by my tiny imprint, HOPELESS BOOKS.) 

Oooh, and he liked it. Score! 

An excerpt:

Jackson’s ensuing adventures are a kind of blood-drenched Magic Theater, a tour of the Western Lands under the guidance of el hombre invisible himself. I must confess, I rather missed our grittier, down-home visit with Jackson and his fellow small town glue huffers, but Bingham’s way with language keeps you going on.

Some lines are worthy of Chandler himself:

“He likes to live in a nutshell. All complete, but can’t hit back, when the world starts cracking.”

And check this out: I am apparently "one of the leading voices of the anti-natalist movement," saith O'Meara. Some may find this a dubious compliment, but I wear it with stinking, rancid, human pride.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

I'm in the Cahiers Octave Mirbeau!

Anyone care to purchase this year's Cahiers Octave Mirbeau? Along with the usual collection of scholarly essays on one of the great underrated writers of the 19th century, you will get the chance to read my first published essay in French. Mine is considerably less learned and scholarly than the rest; it's half a translator's note for my soon-to-be published translation of Dans le ciel (In the Sky), but mostly it's a paean to the immeasurable value of translation work as an apprenticeship in novel writing.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Hey antinatalists: kill yourself, durrr: Brainstorm

I'd like to brainstorm  at least somewhat clever responses to the ever-so-bingo retort: "So why don't you just kill yourself then?"

Couple of mine:


You needn't condone life to accept yours.

And you needn't accept yours to enjoy things.

Because I'm not a crack addict living in a Dumpster. (But my kid could be.)

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

A final attempt to get my braincrush on Ligotti out of my system

Because when your influences show, it's worse than showing your panties.

Did it never occur to you people that this place may be too awful to be random? A mean retarded Maker gloats over your strange seductive minds, these bitter conscious soap bubbles he’s trapped in his weak meat soup. Why would the godshead sentence itself to so many centuries of such bad gruel? Is this joke so funny it’s worth the taste of raw blood forever? How bitter to be the ultimate butt—a “person"—to ride, awake, within the gross blood pudding, wishing only to be immortal—and yet you cry to see God grin and drool as he gorges your flesh down, idiocy omnipotent. So pleased to have made a walking joke that never stops begging for mercy! How nightmarish, to always know he will have the last bite. Do I want morphine when I die? Which is worse? To be awake to feel this obscene bully tear the last of you from your shell, or to be spared the last of your memories? What’s the worth of a memory that can only be held for never? For whose benefit would you savor that last beautiful sunset drenched in pain? The moment it happens, the personality stew you’re so disgustingly proud of is gone.

Or perhaps there is no god. Perhaps, as is possible with all questions, there is no answer. But doesn’t it all seem too elaborately perverse to be an accident? Perhaps the best comfort is to think that we really are in hell and we truly enjoyed our mortal sins in a former life. I hope they were more delicious than we here can imagine.