It has been a while. Hopefully this doesn’t surprise. In the next week we’ll be releasing our 5th Issue, “Homeland Insecurity,” which is slated to be (as in the case of all newborns) our currently favorite child. Stay tuned for previews of the issue in the next few days.
Until then, some things we’ve been meaning to post about for a while.
In case you missed us at the New York Public Library in November, an audio file of our talk, “The Internet as Literature and the End of Magazines,” has been posted at on the library’s “Periodically Speaking” lecture series site. As the NYPL originally billed it, our chit-chat follows “the lifespan, supposed impending death, and posterity of the little, print magazine in the face of a digital abyss.”
Sketch by Travis Pratt (pencil on questionnaire, L-R: Liz, Nick, Dwight, Alex, Ryan and Kat). At the time of this sketch, neither Nick nor Dwight possessed the facial hair here depicted; Pratt has declined to comment on the matter.
The evening began with short readings from Ex-P writers Ryan Lee Wong (“On Marx and Hipsterdom”, Liz Stevens (aka Gordon Ebenezer Gourd; “Wolf Memoirs”), Dwight Livingstone Curtis (new material) and Kat Stoeffel (“The State of Union”), and continued with a discussion among the writers and founding editors Nick Greene and Alex Ludlum.
Additionally, we want to congratulate Liz Stevens (that is, Miss. G.E. Gourd), whose story “Wolf Memoirs” (originally published in Ex-P #2) was recently featured on Fiction Daily’s “Long” selection. Might we add, we are rather pumped to find our “short” stories are considered, on the Internet, to be “long”? You will remember, reader, the particular tribute that vice pays to virtue. Well, in this case the Internet needs no hypocrisy to amend its debt to Print: strait-forward prostration, apparently, will suffice.
Further shout-outs to our writers, which are even more woefully overdue. If you’ve got a subscription to the NYer, you might have already seen that James Wood has a big, big crush on Ex-P #4 contributor Ben Lerner, whose debut novel Leaving Atocha Station is quite simply, as they say, bomb-ass. (For this reason, we publish his poems). As Wood writes:
“[A] subtle, sinuous, and very funny first novel. . . . [Leaving the Atocha Station] has a beguiling mixture of lightness and weight. There are wonderful sentences and jokes on almost every page. Lerner is attempting to capture something that most conventional novels, with their cumbersome caravans of plot and scene and “conflict,” fail to do: the drift of thought, the unmomentous passage of undramatic life. . . . But it is one of the paradoxes of this cunning book that what might seem a skeptically postmodern comedy is also an earnestly old-fashioned seeker of the real—that other thing.”
Finally, in December the New York Times named Matthew Zapruder’s latest collection Come On All You Ghosts one of their 100 Notable Books of 2011. Think that’s cool? How about the fact that, of the 100 selections, only FOUR were books of poetry? While that context better reveals Zapruder’s distinction, we will take this moment to register a complaint with the Gray Lady. Frankly, you don’t seem to read enough poetry. As the only American daily with the cosmopolitan authority to, you know, sustain our culture, you might want to get on that one, Times. Seriously.
Most of that is old news, we know. For this tardiness, we facetiously apologize: didn’t you read our manifesto, Internet? We don’t care about you. Forsooth.