Bart Schaneman on Writing About the American West

The Silence is the Noise, a new short novel by Nebraska-born author Bart Schaneman, is a story of the West. But it’s not a Western, per se, or a gothic fantasy like the work Cormac McCarthy’s been knighted over. This is a novel of the West as it is now—the dying small towns, diminishing natural resources, corporate eco onslaught. The book, which came out August 30th on Trident Press, reads like America feels right now—divided, troubled, at a crossroads between […]

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Six Ridiculous Questions: Matthew Specktor

The guiding principle of Six Ridiculous Questions is that life is filled with ridiculousness. And questions. That only by giving in to these truths may we hope to slip the surly bonds of reality and attain the higher consciousness we all crave. (Eh, not really, but it sounded good there for a minute.) It’s just. Who knows? The ridiculousness and question bits, I guess. Why six? Assonance, baby, assonance.

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Floridian Literature, Liminal Spaces, and Absent Places: A Conversation with Eleanor Kriseman and Laura van den Berg

Eleanor Kriseman’s new novel The Blurry Years traces the coming of age of a young woman named Callie as she travels across the country and comes to understand herself. Laura van den Berg’s new novel The Third Hotel centers around Clare, who discovers her apparently dead husband walking around while visiting Havana for a film festival. These novels share a detailed approach to place; they also utilize absence in fascinating ways. I talked with both writers over the course of […]

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Inside “We Are The Clash”

As you might expect from its title, Mark Andersen and Ralph Heibutzki’s new book We Are the Clash delves into the history of a certain beloved punk band–but it’s the period that they focus on that might surprise some readers. Specifically, Andersen and Heibutzki explore the complex dynamics of the band’s final lineup, the music that they made, and how this uneasily juxtaposed with the rise of reactionary politics. Between this and the upcoming release of a new Joe Strummer […]

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Six Ridiculous Questions: Brian Alan Ellis

The guiding principle of Six Ridiculous Questions is that life is filled with ridiculousness. And questions. That only by giving in to these truths may we hope to slip the surly bonds of reality and attain the higher consciousness we all crave. (Eh, not really, but it sounded good there for a minute.) It’s just. Who knows? The ridiculousness and question bits, I guess. Why six? Assonance, baby, assonance. So, then, without any further disturbance, my first guest/victim is writer […]

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“The Present Also Contains These Crystals of Possibility”: An Interview With Jordy Rosenberg

Describing Confessions of the Fox, Jordy Rosenberg‘s debut novel, is something that’s likely to vary wildly depending on who’s handling the description. Rosenberg’s novel is a thrilling historical saga of outlaws fighting a repressive society; it’s a deftly handled work of metafiction; it’s a smart exploration of questions of gender; it’s a barbed satire of academia circa now. It’s all of these things, and it also possesses a relentless energy, making it a thought-provoking and cerebral page-turner. I asked Rosenberg […]

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Lives Colliding in the Future Arctic: Sam J. Miller on “Blackfish City”

Blackfish City, Sam J. Miller‘s new novel, boasts one of the most intriguing science fictional settings I’ve run across in a long time: Qaanaaq, a floating city in the Arctic in which new societal orders are formed, old grudges burn brightly, and a host of mysteries await their solutions. Miller’s novel centers around a series of ostensibly unconnected characters, until their plotlines begin to converge in unexpected ways; the result is a powerful and unique glimpse of the near future. […]

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Dream Delivery Service Comes to Brooklyn: An Interview with Mathias Svalina

Since 2014, Mathias Svalina has risen well before dawn to hand-deliver poems to subscribers of his Dream Delivery Service. His journeys have taken him to Tucson, Marfa, San Diego, Austin, and, most recently, Buffalo, NY. From July 16th through August 16th, he will be two-wheeling the streets of Brooklyn with his literary goodness and mailing dreams to subscribers who live further away.

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