On ‘A Personal History of Attention’

My piece with Michelle Lynn Dyrness, ‘A Personal History of Attention’, has been published in Vol. 1 No. 3 of Firmament, Sublunary Editions’ print journal. Michelle did the images, I did the words.

This is a real thrill for me for a few reasons – firstly, it’s my first piece in a print journal (!) for a long, long time. How good is paper.

Secondly, it’s always great to work with Josh and the crew at Sublunary who are performing small press miracles.

Thirdly, I really, really like this one as it was the first official collaborative piece Michelle and I did together – we also, with Kyle Coma-Thompson, made a postcard which Sublunary printed off and dispersed, but that came together in other ways. For this, we bounced prose and images back and forth till we had something we felt coalesced into a single piece worth your attention. Since then, we have done more work together, all of which I pray sees the light of day.

If this sounds like your thing, do order a copy, subscribe to Sublunary or check out their backlog.

On ‘The Dead Man Did Bad Things’ and ‘Untitled (The Dead Man Must Come Back)’

The pandemic continues, we are in lockdown and the Dead Man stays dead. As I write this, the state government of Victoria tells the residents of my state we cannot enter. I cannot leave my home without a mask; I cannot go beyond a 5km radius. Calasso died today. It is 2021.

There is little left to say.

Read The Dead Man Did Bad Things.

Read Untitled (The Dead Man Must Come Back).

With thanks, as always, to Saudamini.

On ‘Who Needs Anything Anymore?’

Singapore Air Force flying over Western Australia, 11 April 2020

I have published a piece on Medium titled Who Needs Anything Anymore? — about writing, reading and technology during the pandemic. This piece has existed in various incarnations for almost 12 months now, and, maybe tellingly, no where has been especially interested in publishing it. But I really wanted it out of my head and removed from my writing path, so it was either here or Medium.

Now, I’m clearly 5-6 years late to Medium, and trawling through the stories it looks like it’s overrun with bitcoin, wellness and conspiracy theory content. Possibly I’ll regret putting it there, but I’m curious to see if it finds any sort of audience. We’re all online more than ever, but online publishing feels increasingly like shouting into the void — also sort of the point of the piece.

926 Years review + more III

Equus Press reviews 926 Years

Firstly, 926 Years by Kyle Coma-Thompson and I has been reviewed at Equus Press by David Vichnar. It is part of Vichnar’s fairly comprehensive look at Sublunary Editions‘ output in the first half of 2020. We have had some lovely and lively reviews of our book, and this one is no different. This line was especially appreciated: Another kind of cohesion is the pragmatic one: the “effect” of this stories leaves one humbled, aware that “there are 7.8 billion live people in the world, each with their own story” (Jyoti Verma). With thanks to David and Equus for taking the time and the head space.

Secondly, Vichnar’s thoughts on the book were nice to see, of course, but it was especially welcome because, unbeknownst to him, it almost perfectly coincides with the first birthday of our little book. I can’t really comprehend where and how the time has gone since January 2020, but it’s hard to argue against the calendar. To make matters more baffling, Kyle and I worked on the text all the way back in 2019, a period which now seems to occupy some obscure spot on the time-space continuum – our email exchanges seem like they were both a million years ago but also just last week. Peter wrote: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. Maybe we are all gods now.