The blog strike. * Ewan Morrison wasn’t sorted for Es and whizz. * Evie Wyld‘s debut reviewed: “It’s a cauterising, cleansing tale, told with muscular writing”. * Toby Litt reviews Douglas Coupland‘s Generation A: “The book’s most successful character, Harj, voices contemporary fiction’s dilemma: ‘In the old days, it was much easier, but our modern fame-driven culture, with its real-time 24-7 marinade of electronic information, demands a lot from modern citizens, and poses great obstacles to narrative.’ Coupland is one of the few writers to admit these obstacles, and to try, as best he can, to incorporate them into his books. … But Generation A feels like a slow-motion demonstration of the ways in which technology is destroying story, and not the enacted triumph of story over technology that Coupland so clearly wishes it to be”. * Customized [Douglas] Coupland, design & personalise your own jacket for Generation A. * A Cultural Dictionary of Punk. * Ben Myers on Generation Zzz: “All that’s really lacking is name for this new wave of writers who, in publishing their shopping lists, Gmail chats, chapbooks and poems about vegan food, come across as a literary extension of Vice magazine and have gained a small army of readers as a result. I’d be inclined to call it Generation Yawn on account of the dangerously high levels of ennui on display…”. * It had to happen: Christiana Spens (who has just finished writing a new book) meets Gavin James Bower at the French House in Soho: “As you are daydreaming, you notice a man in the corner, who nearly turns you homosexual, such are his dashing good looks. Your date notices and says, ‘Don’t even think about it — he’s straight… At least I think so… Yeah pretty sure…’ She goes on to explain that this young writer, Gavin James Bower, has just published a novel called Dazed and Aroused that exposes the taunting superficiality of the fashion industry in taut, moving prose… You always judge books by their covers, which works to Bower’s advantage”. * An extract from James Palumbo‘s Tomas which is on Sam Jordison‘s Not the Booker prize shortlist. * When the Soviets planned to invade Manchester. * ZE Records. * Le Frédéric Beigbeder nouveau (Un Roman Français) est arrivé. * Zoë Street Howe talks about her Slits bio in The Quietus. There’s also an interview here. * Check out Michael Jacobson‘s gallery of asemic writing. * The tits tee is 40 years old. * Jello Biafra is back. * Remember Johnson’s great La Rocka! label? * We love James Kelman: “If the Nobel Prize came from Scotland they would give it to a writer of fucking detective fiction, or else some kind of child writer, or something that was not even new when Enid Blyton was writing the Faraway Tree, because she was writing about some upper middle-class young magician or some fucking crap” [3:AM‘s interview with James Kelman]. * This is the New Thing blog. * The world’s most boring book title. * Phone fiction. * Alan Bissett makes some good points on the subject of male/female depictions of sex in books: “Ironically, it is British men (and I’d have to include myself in this) who have been been more uptight about it all. Forthright their language may be, but works such as Irvine Welsh‘s Porno (2002), Adam Thirwell’s Politics (2003), Ewan Morrison‘s The Last Book You Read (2005), Joe Stretch‘s Friction (2008) and Chris Killen‘s The Bird Room (2009) mainly posit men as slaves to their own addictions, and sex as often joyless, anxious or repetitive, another empty product of consumerism or manifestation of power play. …Rarely is there the sheer exultation of the women”. * Aleksandar Hemon: “I believe in the democracy of fiction”. * Where is the good popular fiction for black men? * Johnny Marr in the Mail (of all places).
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First posted: Sunday, August 30th, 2009.