Tuesday, September 6, 2011

epiphany

 I've realized that two of my works, both my collage-work Book of Mutter, still unpublished, and the novel Green Girl are proto-Tumblr, or if not before Tumblr, per se, written in concurrence with but ignorant of this online creative explosion. Book of Mutter because I often collage from and plagiarize film stills and quotes from other sources, and I think also in general because of its repetitive as well as cinephilic nature. Green Girl because of the epigraphs from New Wave films and authors like Clarice Lispector or Rilke that mark the rhythm of my own text - my informed aesthetic at the time was both Benjamin's Arcades Project as well as a girl at her locker. I am really blown away how these Tumblrs are like these endless Arcades Projects. I could write an aesthetic philosophy dealing with Tumblr, so much of it I'm fascinated by and drawn to (such as the fetishization of the handwritten note in so many Tumblr posts, I've always been drawn to textworks of the plaintive scribble, by Louise Bourgeois and Tracey Emin and even more currently, Angela Simione). But I'd rather exist, within that space, and attempt to draw from and learn as much as possible. I knew this to an extent in Heroines, where the second section already drew from the rhythm of a Tumblr, as well as scrapbook works such as Renata Adler's Speedboat and Elizabeth Hardwick's Sleepless Nights, stringing together fragments, observations, quotes, biographical portraits, etc. In fact I drew on the rhythm of the Tumblr to attempt to describe both online notebooking and a new theory of the girl writing, a new sort of contemporary l'ecriture feminine: in Heroines I wrote: "The girl's Tumblr–that movement. This is how we write. Collaging and collecting. Tumbling, tumbling, down the rabbit hole." But now that I am more than an outside observer I feel this even more intensely.

Also thinking today how much Kathy Acker would have loved Tumblr, I think. All the irreverence and emo intensity and porniness, the homage and plagiarism as its dominating ethos. 




spill

I am having a massive coronary of extreme love and affection and respect for these girls and their Tumblrs. I feel like this entire Library of Lovely Babble has opened up to me. I had no idea. I imagined, but I had no idea how vast and anarchic and desire-filled and violent and sentimental and intensely self-critical and broken and brave and brilliant these spaces were as well as their authors. It has been a joy. I just want to exist in that world, forever. I am also struck by how many suicide Tumblrs there are.

Anyway. I also just booked THE TOUR for GREEN GIRL. Yikes. Having heart-attacks on that as well. If anyone who I've communicated with here or elsewhere has a guest room in Seattle, Portland, or Philadelphia and wouldn't mind having me and my partner John stay with you please email me/let me know. I want to do hotel, as we're trying to make it a holiday (SEA/PDX, as we've never been), but I'm also hyperventilating over the priciness. I am both a spendthrift and cheap. Wait, does a spendthrift mean cheap? The opposite of a spendthrift. A lush. Also, if anyone has a place I can crash solo in San Fran or San Diego please also give me a holler. I will give you a book (two books!) and read to you and...cook you a vegetarian meal. And try my best to be both tiptoey and charmant. I just got Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything Vegetarian over the weekend, because I feel I should become a domestic goddess in between projects, in lieu of me being lazy and John cooking everything, and instead I am hyperventilating because it's too much, too vast and encyclopedic. I bought French lentils this morning and sherry vinegar and good bread because I  planned to whip up a simple French repast for myself, as Bittman says to do, but instead I am Tumbling and blogging and just eating plain bread. Although my favorite part of cooking lentils is spilling the dried beans out on a kitchen towel, and sifting through them with my hands to check for rocks, how soothing it is, and this time I bought the more-expensive green Puy ones, because I felt that seemed extra-something, and waiting for the mosaic to appear.

Love you all. Be patient for me in this next few months of me-me-me touring booking editing etc. crisis.

Also, one last thing: check out this new press A Bolha Editora just launched in Rio by the brilliant writer Rachel Gontijo De Araujo (who I published a text from when I curated Everyday Genius last year). They will be translating into Portuguese works by, seriously, my favorite contemporary writers - the Bhanu Kapil, Nath Stephens, Douglas Martin, and Gail Scott. Also an upcoming project with Nightboat which I know nothing about but I'm sure will be fantastic.