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Thread: Big Books

  1. #121
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    I'm thinking of glass, white rooms, glossy magazines, cocaine, ice, tablets, chrome.

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  3. #122
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    I'm much more superstitious. i don't let the graven image inside my temple. This is a crucial difference between us. so you're absolutely right in that respect.

  4. #123
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    "Not just images and bodies but every material: metal, glass, plastic, fibre. So tactile! The connection between Guy Bourdin's early slides of LA doorways and curbs and his later fashion photographs make exact and perfect sense now. He made connections that would come to define the link between lust and consumerism. He realised this subtle intimacy between things, how it would, in the future, finally determine reaction and response, undercurrent and contours.

    This is more to do with blank and obtuse visual dynamics, the awkward and cruel pose of bodies, the sheen of skin glossed into a plastic (fetishist) desire, the sharp colours and angles of concrete curves and corners, corrugated iron doors, road signs, and the discreet order of rock formations (Bourdin's early photos of cliffs and granite structures, and his Kodak slides of LA buildings and road patterns set up the visual lexicon of his fashion photographs - a tactile and textural language is worked out before and directly informs these pictures). Bourdin creates an impersonal visual world (coldness and cruelty) that remains glacial and grotesque in its distance and distortion, and is therefore necessarily and inescapably seductive. A cold eroticism that freezes LA sun."

  5. #124
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    Utterly obsessed with the image and the image can only ever be a surface.

  6. #125
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    This is the kind of writing I think he should have carried on with. But he wanted to do proper journalism and he got embarrassed by this stuff and wanted to put it behind him.

  7. #126
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    Quote Originally Posted by luka View Post
    Utterly obsessed with the image and the image can only ever be a surface.
    You have to be to like those Eurocult films.

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  9. #127
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    Quote Originally Posted by version View Post
    It's not necessarily the prose. It's what he's talking about. That DeLillo thing reads like Ellis to me, minus the obsessive lists. The listless rich white guy in his 20s.
    Yeah but he can't create the glossy surface with his prose. So it doesn't quite work. You need to write with glamour to get it over.

  10. #128
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    Quote Originally Posted by version View Post
    This is is Craner, right? I get the feeling I've read it before.
    I posted it about an hour ago on this thread! It's Craner yes, when he was about 24

  11. #129
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    Quote Originally Posted by craner View Post
    Ancient Evenings by Norman Mailer

    He wasted years on it and then nobody read the fucking thing.
    - "The recent news aboput Mailer being on his deathbed reminded me of my one and only attempt at reading his stuff. I must have gotten through at least the first third of this book but godalmighty... pretty much just an excuse for vivid descriptions of buggery, buggery, and incest. Also, buggery."

    - "Ancient Evenings is a thoroughly unpleasant novel – in it Norman Mailer almost sadistically admires all sorts of violence and atrocity. If he were an Egyptian deity he surely wouldn’t have been Thoth or Horus, he would have been Seth or Anubis."

    - "One of the silliest books ever written by a writer possessed of some genius. I think it was at this book that I gave up on Mailer. It became more interesting to consider why he had gone off the tracks than to read him. I still think he would have been a great appointment to the Supreme Court."

    Quote Originally Posted by craner View Post
    I still think novelists have to bring something new formally and thematically and be part of the zeitgeist. From that point of view the novel is dead and its last twitch was the Brat Pack.
    I remember a bit of a fuss surrounding whatever it was Tao Lin was doing.

  12. #130
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    I read quite a lot of the executioners song but gave up less than half way. Too much buildup. Tao lins 'trip' was enjoyable, spesh the last section where he goes to a plant drawing workshop with Kathleen McKenna, but it ain't no big book

  13. #131
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    I didn't bring Lin up as having written a big book, I brought him up because I remember a bunch of people going on about Taipei and some of his other stuff being some new 'internet-age' fiction and Craner was on about "novelists having to bring something new formally and thematically and be part of the zeitgeist".

  14. #132
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    re: Mailer - I read The Fight a couple of years ago and enjoyed it overall, but he should have stuck to covering the actual fight as his blundering around attempting to talk about race didn't fly at all.

  15. #133
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    Quote Originally Posted by version View Post
    I didn't bring Lin up as having written a big book, I brought him up because I remember a bunch of people going on about Taipei and some of his other stuff being some new 'internet-age' fiction and Craner was on about "novelists having to bring something new formally and thematically and be part of the zeitgeist".
    Yeah I've not read any of those novels. Tried, they are unreadable. I think he's trying to come to terms with what a dick he's been

  16. #134
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    I read the opening of Taipei on Amazon and it reminded me of Ellis. I might read Trip.

  17. #135
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    Frightening that this generation thinks this is groundbreaking
    26 November 2018
    Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase

    Tao Lin doesn't realise he's not living. He is completely dysfunctional having a bad life. He thinks it's OK to spend his days refreshing web pages and blaming pesticides for his issues. His issues are simple: he has no life. He avoids this depressing fact by hiding in psychedelics. But actually has a really awful experience every time he tries them. All he can do is get really paranoid and destroy his computer and online presence. This should tell him something: he's got no real life. The trips keep trying to tell him, but he doesn't listen. Instead, he takes every opportunity to get stoned and carries on not living. What is telling is that he cannot see that McKenna died because he did psychedelics - who gets frontal cortex cancer? And he regretted it. McKenna's son catalogues porn and somehow Lin thinks he's a genius. This poor author who hasn't even ever seen a hash plant...really? There are clues everywhere in this book that Lin should take heed. He's not Hamilton Morris, who is completely aware of everything he is doing. He's basically a naive and gullible person with no friends hiding in another reality he doesn't even enjoy. Furthermore, this book is badly written. Summarisng McKenna's work and videos is not writing a book. The editing is atrocious. Maybe it was cute to have run-on sentences in fiction but run-on sentences that don't finish are unforgiveable. I feel like very young people who have never heard of McKenna etc. will find this interesting but it's such a low level of basic understanding and so derivative I'm not sure why it got published. What's more immediately frightening is the level of nihilism and lack of self. If this were a fictional book, I imagine it would read like Patrick Bateman Tries Drugs. I can only assume that's what happened in Lin's fiction books: people assumed he was writing a character. But it's actually just him. He's a sociopath, not one scrap of empathy, alwasy about himself. It's a very scary personality, and the only reason I kept reading was his utterly revolting way of acting with others. I hope he gets help. The publisher should have been more responsible than to publish this work, in which Lin is clear he thinks everyone is a CIA agent and doesn't actually say this with any irony. Probably the best book on psychedelics if you want to read a horror story on why not to take them. Tao Lin has not expanded his reality, just found a really horrible space to hide from his.


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