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Interviews » The estate agent’s guide to artisan baking: Iain Sinclair interviewed (published 28/07/2015)

We find a bench that allows me to have the station sign in frame. I go to reference my two pages of typed notes, carefully assembled from a binge back-to-back reading of London Overground and Black Apples of Gower but an easterly gust of wind hoists them into the sky and over the high wall into the garden of the Geffrye Museum. Iain laughs. Don’t worry I assure him, the impressions of both books are firmly stamped on my mind, I probably had too many questions anyway – we’d freewheel it, follow the drift of conversation.

Iain Sinclair returns to 3:AM while John Rogers keeps the camera running.

Interviews » “an accidental novel”: Iain Sinclair interviewed (published 26/11/2014)

The 70 x 70 book is more than just a record of this filmic dérive around London, it is a repertory cinema season on paper, the SCALA brought back to life in print; a revival of the world of wall-charts peppered with classics by Fritz Lang, Douglas Sirk, Godard, unheralded oddities, all-nighters interrupted at 4am by a punk band to keep you awake. But it is also a form of autobiography, weaving a path through Sinclair’s life and work as he discusses the background to each selection, or “an accidental novel”, as he describes it.

John Rogers interviews Iain Sinclair on his 70×70 book.

Interviews » Free-Thinking London Babble: My Fucked Interview With Iain Sinclair (published 11/11/2006)

An easy interview. Iain Sinclair sits genially and talks into the recorder for over an hour, and there’s the sly undercurrent in this of a benign Sir William Gull instructing the ignorant Netley of the ventricles of London, England’s heart, as they turn down Greenwood Road as far as Albion Drive to survey London Fields and the suburb of Hackney containing the overspill of the East End. I’m the duff Netley, the stuttering ignoramus, wrestling with the recording machine and then failing to register its weird failure. Two hours later, speeding away in an unwashed van cluttered with dead paperbacks, used up Costa paper cups and rotten apple cores, I’m clicking the corpse button trying for the replay and finding nothing but white noise.

By Richard Marshall.

Reviews » Men and Women Who Will Not Grow Up (published 25/07/2017)

The novel’s topography is unmistakably London, though it’s difficult to pin down. The Bacchus Bar where the bohemian characters gather is reminiscent of Soho; the nearby school less so. There are echoes of Peter Ackroyd’s theory that holds the place itself, with its demands for sacrificial offerings, responsible for the crimes it attracts. Kersh, however, puts emphasis on ‘a certain midnight’ rather than the place, estimating the balance of probabilities thus: ‘God, as a gentleman, tries to think well of the watchful enemy, but Evil knows all the tricks.’

Anna Aslanyan reviews the reissue of Gerald Kersh‘s Prelude to a Certain Midnight.

Interviews » Bookshops — An interview with Jorge Carrión (published 07/04/2017)

The bibliography about libraries is abundant: that of bookshops, in turn, is minimal. Departing from this fundamental difference, between their importance within academic tradition, one can establish many other contrapositions. Libraries are almost always public; the bookshops, private. Libraries hardly change site; bookshops are more nomadic, they are constantly on the move.

Jorge Carrión and Carlos Fonseca on the nature of bookshops and much more.

Interviews » Defiant Pose Revisited: An Interview with Stewart Home (published 24/03/2017)

I wrote it in 1989 and so it was actually written 27 years ago, and I was pleasantly surprised by how good I found the book when I reread it. I didn’t discuss it with anyone at the time, and got various friends of mine to pose as me for press interviews. I didn’t do any readings from it until 1993 either. I knew the scene in which the main character Terry Blake recites Abiezer Coppe was a groove sensation because I still read it. Well recite it, I got the idea to recite my work live in part from that passage, since I wanted to mirror what the narrator was doing, although generally I’m not also getting a blow job while I’m reciting that piece in public.

Bridget Penney interviews Stewart Home.

Essays » Der Amerikanische Freund: Petit/Wenders/Jarmusch (published 18/03/2017)

It wouldn’t be bad to ban the American cinema for a while. Three-quarters of the planet considers cinema from the angle and according to the criteria of American cinema… People must become aware that there are other ways to make films than the American way. Moreover this would force filmmakers in the United States to revise their conceptions. It would be a good thing.
– Jean-Luc Godard

Louis Armand on avoiding American cinema.

Essays » Lumpenproletariat. Writing Attack/Antisystem/Subliterature (published 03/01/2017)

These are properly “deconstructive texts” in the sense that they burlesque rather than conventionally critique: they occupy the very language of disenfranchisement that is otherwise employed to demonstrate that they do not really exist. There is nothing of a Foucauldian paradigm here: this is not some pretence to an authentic voice of the excluded, a critique of the history of reason from the POV of the madwoman in the attic. The truly subversive character of the sublit project is that it is first and foremost a “locus” of détourning action – a radical poetics – a tropism. While the theorisers of the recuperated avantgarde toil to contain and expropriate the thing they imagine subliterature to be, their grasp necessarily comes up empty: there’s nothing to grasp, in any case, but a hologram of their own transgressed image, which they are more than adept at attending to.

Louis Armand on the Sublit Project.

Buzzwords » Top Reads of 2016: Andrew Gallix (published 18/12/2016)

  My book of the year was Claire-Louise Bennett’s Pond, which, technically, came out in 2015, but has haunted me ever since first reading it. This is where the future of fiction in English is being written. Joanna Walsh is also pushing back boundaries in both fiction (Vertigo) and nonfiction (Hotel). With Hot Milk, Deborah Levy produced […]

Interviews » A Conversation on M.R. James (published 18/11/2016)

Because of the writer that James was, his prose come across as very conversational. The criticism often suggested of him is that it’s rambling and dusty but I don’t think that myself. When you have to start breaking that down, fitting his text into boxes, there’s actually no fat on his writing at all. The aspects you might think of as extraneous are actually an important part of how these texts work; the everyday setting, the ordinary people venturing into extraordinary situations.

Leah Moore and John Reppion in conversation with Adam Scovell.