To see something you've written, in such an interior years-long process, now externalized as an object, is a strange event. I received Heroines yesterday in the post. It is now a book. A rather big book. Long. Shiny. It has words. I really don't know how else to explain it. The book was supposed to have a silver cover, and there was a confusion, and now it has the gray cover that was shown in pictures. I mean, it's gray. More like a lightish gray-purple. It's not silver. I mourned that for a day yesterday but now I guess I'm over it. I guess the book as object has less to do with me. I guess perhaps it's more of a gray book, than a silver book, if that makes sense.
I flipped through it—read some lines. Thought—yes, I wrote it. That was all.
The sense that it will be in the world, soon, is in the world. That people might be reading it. People you know. People you don't know. Those two divisions, each bearing different weights. It's weird. I like it when people feel a sense of communion with it. That feels very gratifying. Others have wanted me to speak about ideas in the book—I have done so, I have tried. And yet, part of me feels, the past few years of my life is in the book. One should read the book to have a conversation with me—the conversation, I mean, is in the book. A bit odd the publishing process where we want to turn writers into public speakers. I have a phone meeting today with people who want to talk about bringing the novel into a different form. I am open to the conversation, eager to have it. Trying not to think too much of it. But I also feel again - well, what I wrote is in the book. I have written it. It is up to you to interpret it.
More books as objects in the mail. Ones that I feel no ambivalence about. The first chapbook, Violence, from Sarah McCarry (alias: The Rejectionist)'s Guillotine Press—devoted to publishing "radical nonfiction." The long version of the interview on violence between Vanessa Veselka and Lidia Yuknavitch—two of my favorite writers working today. Lidia too I feel such a special kinship with, always have - not only did she publish O Fallen Angel, but she blurbed Green Girl and I have always felt such an affinity to her. I never thought anywhere else would publish O Fallen Angel, in fact. But their conversation is so—spirited and intimate and brilliant and fiery and about so many things I'm interested in.
Also I just received The Obscene Madame D by Hilda Hist, who I've been dying to read ever since the brilliant Lucas De Lima wrote about the Brazilian writer on Montevidayo. It's a joint publication with the also quite brilliant Rachel Gontijo Araujo's A Bolha Editions.
Okay I wanted to take pictures of the books but I couldn't find a surface large enough so I put them on my floor.