The world is definitely a poorer place today. When I heard the news, the last thing I wanted to do today was write anything. My first instinct was to just stay in bed listening to T Rex — Sebastian’s favorite band — and drink rum all day. I wrote this because I didn’t want the news of Sebastian’s death to be dominated by all of those piss-poor journalists who didn’t know much about him other than his press kit, and who routinely demolished him for being style over substance (which was particularly funny given the fact that this was Sebastian’s express intent). He was something of a failure at being superficial, though. After all, he accidentally wrote a book of substance that will live on in infamy for years to come. Sebastian was a true original, a character, and someone who truly didn’t give a fuck. I hope that some of his spirit lives on through his work, and through the people whose lives he touched. We need people like Sebastian now more than ever.
My Dear Tony,
Thank you my dear. It’s funny isn’t it that people like us who are considered so bad actually care so much about life? In spite of the shocking nature of how we are seen we are actually moralists. Our work has a terrible morality in fact.
You know something? When I wrote my book all I ever wanted was to write the best dandy book that had ever been written. Well, I succeeded there because there aren’t any. Then all I wanted was that the people I loved and respected would appreciate what I was doing. That the line I came from, and the line into which I was going was secure. And it is. I love that Carrie has introduced you and me and Dennis [Cooper] and that we are trying to keep the fire burning, the heart yearning and the mind learning.
What else is there? Existence is so meaningless we might as well make a kind of grandeur out of it rather than be nursed into oblivion.
However, if that’s the only article you read on 3:AM this week, you should be ashamed of yourself:
Flash fiction: ‘Two Drunks’ by Thom Young
Reviewed: Max Dunbar on Hampton Sides’ Hellhound on his Trail & Afsaneh Moqadam’s Death to the Dictator!; Richard Marshall on Stewart Homes’ Blood Rites of the Bourgeoisie; Colin Herd on Jean-Philippe Toussaint’s Self-Portrait Abroad; Karl Whitney on Christian Salmon’s Storytelling: Bewitching the Modern Mind; Anna Aslanyan on Tom McCarthy’s C:
Among features McCarthy’s fans will recognise in this book to their joy is the cinematic quality of his writing. As in his earlier books, every now and again the author notices something so striking in its beauty or violence or both that he cannot help himself — he freezes his camera on it, giving us a long, Tarkovsky-style scene shot from an angle no one has thought of before. In Remainder we stood transfixed, side by side with the protagonist, watching a shot man’s blood trickle into a puddle of water. In C a victim of shooting is lying in the street, his blood mixing with milk, projecting an even stronger image on the reader’s retina. Serge’s delirious dreams are of a similar nature; in one of them, “the whole scene’s flat, like film”.
First posted: Sunday, June 20th, 2010.