The blog of author Dennis Cooper

Kip Kinkel Day *

* (restored/expanded)

His event

‘One day in 1998 Kip Kinkel went to school with a gun in his backpack, and he was expelled. The school called in the police and they took him away and called his father to come get him. He later stated that decided then and there that all hope was gone. When he arrived home, he went to his room, got his semiautomatic rifle, and then returned to the kitchen and shot his father to death. Then he called a friend and talked for a while as he waited for his mother to come home. She arrived around 6, parked in the garage downstairs and began to go up the steps. Kip came and told her he loved her before he shot her six times.

‘He covered the bodies of both of his parents with sheets and as he waited through the night, he placed homemade bombs around the home, putting one under his mother’s body. He then turned on the soundtrack to Romeo and Juliet to play continuously, and left a note.

I have just killed my parents! I don’t know what is happening. I love my mom and dad so much. I just got two felonies on my record. My parents can’t take that! It would destroy them. The embarrassment would be too much for them. They couldn’t live with themselves. I’m so sorry. I am a horrible son. I wish I had been aborted. I destroy everything I touch. I can’t eat. I can’t sleep. I didn’t deserve them. They were wonderful people. It’s not their fault or the fault of any person, organization, or television show. My head just doesn’t work right. God damn these VOICES inside my head. I want to die. I want to be gone. But I have to kill people. I don’t know why. I am so sorry! Why did God do this to me. I have never been happy. I wish I was happy. I wish I made my mother proud. I am nothing! I tried so hard to find happiness. But you know me I hate everything. I have no other choice. What have I become? I am so sorry

‘Then he went to school with his rifle and a pistol, and in less than a minute shot 48 rounds into his classmates. He put a rifle to one boy’s head and killed him. He’d also fatally wounded another and hit eight more. Fifteen kids were hurt in the stampede to escape. Some kids wrestled him to the floor and he begged, “Just kill me.”

‘Though he was 15, Kinkel was certified to be tried as an adult. He’d initiated an insanity defense, but dropped it and pled guilty to four counts of first-degree murder and twenty-four counts of attempted murder. He was sentenced to 112 years in prison without parole.’ —


His confession


His journal

I sit here all alone. I am always alone. I don’t know who I am. I want to be something I can never be. I try so hard every day. But in the end, I hate myself for what I’ve become.

The only reason I stay alive is because of hope. Even though I am repulsive and few people know who I am, I still feel that things might, maybe, just a little bit, get better.

I don’t understand any fucking person on this earth. Some of you are so weak, mainly, that a four year old could push you down. I am strong, but my head just doesn’t work right.

I feel like everyone is against me, but no one ever makes fun of me, mainly because they think I am a psycho. There is one kid above all others that I want to kill. I want nothing more than to put a hole in his head. The one reason I don’t: Hope. That tomorrow will be better. As soon as my hope is gone, people die.

Please. Someone, help me. All I want is something small. Nothing big. I just want to be happy.

It is clear that no one will help me. Oh God, I am so close to killing people. So close.

I gave her all I have, and she just threw it away. Why? Why did God just want me to be in complete misery? I need to find more weapons. My parents are trying to take away some of my guns! My guns are the only things that haven’t stabbed me in the back.

My eyes hurt. They hurt so bad. They feel like they are trying to crawl out of my head. Why aren’t I normal? Help me. No one will. I will kill every last mother fucking one of you. The thought of you is still racing in my head. I am too drunk to make sense.

Every time I see your face, my heart is shot with an arrow. I think she will say yes, but she doesn’t, does she? She says, “I don’t know”. The three most fucked up words in the English language.

I want you to feel this, be this, taste this, kill this. Kill me. Oh God, I don’t want to live. Will I see it to the end? What kind of dad would I make? All humans are evil. I just want to end the world of evil.

No, I don’t believe in love at first sight because love is an evil plot to make people buy alcohol and firearms. When you love someone something it is always taken away from you. I also would like to add that I hate each and every one of you. Because everything I touch turns to shit. I think if you think you fall in love with someone at first sight it might just be lust.

Love at first sight is only in movies. Where the people in the movies are better than you. That is why you go to a pone [pawn] shop and buy an AK-15 because you are going to execute every last mother fucking one of you. If I had a heart it would be gray.

It is easier to hate than love. Because there is much more hate and misery in the world than there is love and peace. Some people say that you should love everyone. But that is impossible. Look at our history it is full of death, depression, rape, wars and diseases. I also do not believe in love at first sight. But I do believe in hate at first sight. Therefore love is a much harder feeling to experience.

I really wouldn’t know how to answer this question because my cold black heart has never and never will experience true love. I can tell you one about love. It does more harm than good. I plan to live in a big black hole. My firearms and [illegible] will be the only things to fight my isolation. I would also like to point out Love is a horrible thing.


His fans 1

Kip Kinkel Mixtape Preview. (5-20-12)

Kip Kinkel/Rammstein Slideshow

Dedicated to Kip Kinkel by Kindstod

The Strums – Kip Kinkel (single)

‘Kip Kinkel – Shots Fired!’


His present

Kip Kinkel 2013

‘In June 2007, Kinkel sought a new trial. He said that his previous attorneys should have taken the case to trial and used the insanity defense. Both a psychologist and a psychiatrist testified on Kinkel’s behalf that he was too mentally ill to understand a plea bargain that sent him to prison for more than 111 years. “He was very, very ill,” said Dr. William H. Sack, the retired director of child and adolescent psychiatry at Oregon Health & Science University, who also treated Kinkel during his stay at the state juvenile prison before Kinkel was transferred to the state penitentiary earlier this month. Both Sack and Dr. Orin Bolstad, a clinical psychologist who is an expert on juvenile offenders, said Kinkel exhibited all the “classic signs” of paranoid schizophrenia, a mental illness Kinkel had gone to great lengths to hide because he feared he would be considered abnormal or even mentally retarded.

‘Kinkel also suffered from hallucinations, hearing “voices” in his head, and from delusions, including his belief that the Walt Disney Co. was trying to take control of the country, and that the government had implanted a computer chip in his brain, Sack and Bolstad said. “Kip Kinkel began hearing voices in the sixth grade, when he was 12 years old,” Sack said. “He was just a kid. He desperately wanted to be normal.” Bolstad added that Kinkel was too young to understand what was happening to him, so he kept his symptoms hidden, even though he later called the voices “a living hell.”

‘In August 2007, a Marion County judge denied him a new trial. Kinkel appealed, arguing among other things that he had had ineffective assistance of counsel during the trial proceedings. On January 12, 2011, the Oregon Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court judgment denying his motion for a new trial. On June 11, 2007, Kinkel, nearing his 25th birthday (maximum age to be held as a juvenile in Oregon), was transferred from the Oregon Youth Authority, MacLaren Correctional Facility, to the Oregon State Correctional Institution, Oregon Department of Corrections.’ — collaged


His prison drawing


His fans 2



[15 May 2005|10:15pm] stormygc
hey i wrote kip but did not recive a respose i think it may have been a incorret address does anyone here have the correct one and know for a fact that its the right one thanks a lot ^_^

[20 Jun 2005|04:41am] _stddance
Just wondering… Are there specific things that you cannot send Kip? Are CD’s out of the question? I read that photographs are all right. What about things such as candy? Soap? I know that might sound weird… Is he still at MacLauren? I’m thinking of writing to him. And, by the way, has anyone ever told Kip about this community when they wrote to him?

[11 Aug 2005|09:12pm] bloodycute
I wrote to Kip near the end of April but I never got any response. I think it’s because I gave him my dorm address instead of my home address (dont want my parents seeing that I got a letter from a correctional facility) but this was near the end of the school year and I have no clue if where or when the university would forward mail with an old address on it, bleh.

[24 Sep 2005|10:16am] adamriggs
I wrote to Kip for the first time last month, I just wondered if anyone had heard from him lately, also if he does want to reply to my letter does he usually take a couple months? Im from United Kingdom also though so maybe he will be put off replying to me because of the postage.

[12 Feb 2006|03:16am] vertigo_skyy
Hello. I was just wondering if anyone had Kip’s address?

JUST KIDDING. I swear reading back in entries someone has asked that question in EVERY post almost!! Jeez. Don’t worry, I’ll look it up myself! What I really posted wanting to know was what do you write to Kip about? You don’t have to tell me anything specific, just general.

[29 Sep 2006|08:39pm] shady_heaven
HE WROTE BACK!!! And relatively fast, too! Right now I am giddy with excitement; I can barely talk! ^_^

His letter was about a page long and handwritten in what I would call not-overly-horrible-but-not-the-best penmanship. I wouldn’t feel right relaying what he wrote word for word here, but the gist of it is that he is doing well, keeping optimistic, and hasn’t gotten into any fights.

Also, some interesting facts Kip shared about himself: “Underworld” and “Underworld 2: Evolution” are among his favorite movies at the moment. His favorite color is black, although he is not gothic. ( To paraphrase his own words ) The way he talked in his letter, I get the impression that Kip loves getting mail from compassionate, understanding people. He even encouraged me to write back!



His reportage

Kip Kinkel The Killer At Thurston High Documentary

A police detective leads Kipland P. Kinkel on a walk-through of Thurston High School

Kip Kinkel survivors heal with time, but never forget


His links

Kip Kinkel @ Wikipedia
‘Frontline: The Killer At Thurston High’ @
The Kip Kinkel case (Kinkel v. Lawhead (A137866)
Kip Kinkel Letters for sale @ Serial Killers Ink
Kip Kinkel Facebook page
‘Kip Kinkel Back in the News’ ( August 11th 2011)
‘Shakespeare and School Shooters, Part 2: Kip Kinkel’



His fans 3

Kent Senecal Kip Kinkel (2013)

Rane Hend Kip Kinkel (2015)

Young God There Is No God (2017)

Frances Inland Why Kip (2017)

Robert Beck Art Work by Kipland Kinkel For His Parents (2004)

Adam Pintauro Untitled (2013)

TangerinesTerrarium Untitled (2017)




p.s. Hey. ** JM, Hi. Yes! A Jon Jost fan! Something one doesn’t have the luck to find every day. Big up, fist bumps, etc. Yeah, agree about deadlines. They’ve kicked my ass appropriately in the past and even currently, I suppose. I was hoping you’d be interested enough in water-chlorination to get wordy and I thought you might. Gonna put together an Ito Day as soon as I get a minute. ** David Ehrenstein, Hi. Your link aka The Washington Post wouldn’t let me in as I think I’ve reached my, whatever, 4 article limit for this month, but I’ll figure out if I know or remember Oriana Fallaci. ** Chris Cochrane, Hi. Yes, I am. From tip to stern about nine days. I’m looking forward to everything except the flight, jet lag, and public event-related stress. Nope, non-stop Paris -> LA -> Paris. Rico’s in NYC! I miss Rico. He wanted to be on the crew of ‘PGL’, and we wanted him there, but he doesn’t speak French, so it ended up being too impractical. Of course I support you, and will, in the music being louder. Ish is against that? I mean, it depends how loud, I guess, but louder is almost always a huge plus. Hugs about the missing. You’ll feel better and righter. You will. You doubt me? About the reveal? Okay, fine, I’ll do it right here. The secret project is a three-episode television series for the German/French TV channel ARTE. Zac and I are co-writing it, and Gisele is the director. How it happened is some ARTE higher-ups saw our theater work ‘The Ventriloquists Convention’, and they loved it, and they threw out the idea of us doing a mini-series spin off for them. We were interested for the obvious reasons and also because there is a character in ‘TVC’, or rather two — a female ventriloquist and her dummy — who we were really excited about and with whom we’d already had thoughts of doing more. So we made a proposal, and ARTE accepted it, and now we have a development deal to write the series and, assuming they like it, or, rather, assuming we’re okay with what will likely be a lot of back and forth to get the script acceptable to them over the next months — and that seems pretty likely — then they will buy the series, and, barring the unexpected, it will be shot at the beginning of next year. The first draft of the series script(s) is due on April 15th, but since Zac and I will take off traveling on Saturday, we’re scrambling to get it finished this week, and I think we will. It’s a weird, complicated series, but the very basic premise — which is very, very loosely based on Candice Bergen/Edgar Bergen — is that the daughter of a late ventriloquist, who was the most famous ventriloquist in the world, left his equally famous dummy to his daughter when he died. She had a very fucked up relationship with the dummy when she was a child and growing up because it got infinitely more attention from her father than she did. Now she lives with the dummy whom she animates pretty much 24/7 and treats as almost a sentient being. And chaos ensues. So there you go. Questions? ** Steve Erickson, I think Procol Harum has a fair number of songs that are better than ‘A Whiter Shade …’, but they’re scattered over a number of albums. I hope the interview went well. In some cases, you can watch Jost’s films on his Vimeo site for a nominal fee. I especially highly recommend ‘Sure Fire’ and ‘Last Chants for a Slow Dance’. I read your ND/NF piece this morning. Made me really want to be there. Also made clearer why ‘PGL’ wasn’t exactly a shoo-in. But there are some very promising related noises. Everyone, Mr. Erickson has written an overview this year’s edition of one of the very best film festivals in the country — NYC’s New Directors/New Films — and, if you’re there, it will help you choose, and, if you’re not, like me, you can read about some films you might or might not ever get to see. Here. ** Sypha, Sounds great, James, and thank you a ton! Obviously just let me know if you need any help or anything. ** Dóra Grőber, Hi! Thank you for your confidence in ‘PGL’. Zac and I feel really confident of the film and that it will find its way in some unpredictable way. Strangely, and very unusually, my back started improving yesterday on its own. That almost never happens, so I’m just hoping it’ll keep getting better without set backs. I finally revealed the ‘secret’ project in my message to Chris up above. Eek, ashes are lovely things but not especially delicious. I worked on the usual stuff. Solid drafts of all three episodes are now ready, and Gisele is reading them to see what further she wants us to do. Today we meet about Episode Three, which is the newest one we wrote, and the rest on Thursday. I didn’t do much of anything else. Just that and walking and sitting very carefully hoping not to disturb my back’s improving mood. ** _Black_Acrylic, Hi, Ben. Cool, I’ll check my email. The McCall show was all you’d hoped? Nice pic. ** Kreatonopolis, Hi. Oh, you’re already gone and in Greece? Yeah, let’s try to meet where you get back. I fly to LA on Saturday. Hard Rock, the great equaliser. When I was there, looking at the Acropolis made me really depressed. I thought it made the rest of Athens look like the apocalypse or something. Wow, enjoy! ** Misanthrope, Hi. Jost might just one of your cups of movie tea. I can totally imagine that. I’ll hope to get to lay my eyes on both kids then. Awesome. Any principal or vice news? ** Right. I decided to bring my old, dead Kip Kinkel post back to life and see what happens. He was kind of a muse for me in my work at one point. My novel ‘My Loose Thread’ was inspired by his confession. And I wrote one of my better poems — ‘A Symphony of Confusion About the People I Killed, by Kip Kinkel’ — in an imaginary version of his voice. And with that I leave you to do what you will. See you tomorrow.


  1. Keathnaos

    omg it’s my baby! you know kip is my baby’s daddy. seriously though I’ve always been on the side of the shooters. im queer a gun freak (who’s not allowed to own one so what) and a product of the 90s. school shooters are my life. mlt is like the Big Mac of books it’s the fucking shit! he was made a porn star and that video with him and the guy can’t take it. breaks my fucking heart. alienation fuck we were hardly 64 bit in those days. absolutely adore Athens. walked miles of it today. well read nerdy Athenian boys hitting me up. the lil ones are gorgeous. the cities a fucking huge shit hole like the city itself the people have a certain way about them. the acropolis is great too much non content sculpture here the entrance is awesome. def Athena’s town I’m tapt into her. dig it the most. I’ll holla. much love

  2. Steve Erickson

    Yes, the interview went well, although at first Sophie had trouble making out my voice. I’ve transcribed about 2/3rds and will finish this today. (I have another interview to conduct tomorrow.)

    I’m seeing a few more films at public “ND/NF” screenings, like the Georgian SCARY MOTHER, which is about a middle-aged housewife who upsets her family by deciding to devote her life to poetry this Saturday and that 4-hour Chinese film by the director who killed himself the following weekend. I have a lot of video links that I might check out too.

    This morning, I’m going to a press screening of Lucretia Martel’s ZAMA and then writing a review.

  3. David Ehrenstein

    Today couldn’t be timelier.

    R.I.P. Stephane Audran

    It’s Sarah Vaughan’s Birthday

  4. Dóra Grőber


    Thank you for this post! I was just researching details of the Johnny Gosch case before I came here so this was quite a fascinating “sequel”.

    Very, very good news about your back! I hope it’s getting even better today! I keep my fingers, like all of them, crossed!
    Wow! First, I just need to stop for a moment because it’s really happening! The contract mess is coming to an end! And the no-longer-secret project sounds so, so fantastic! Very exciting!

    As I said, half of my day was spent in true crime world (for some reason I really dislike the term “true crime”) but then my internet connection decided to die again so I was forced out of it, very much against my will. I, then, spent my time with reading and writing.
    How was the day on your end? Your back keeps improving, I hope? How was the meeting concerning Episode 3?

  5. Bernard

    Uh–*delusion* that Walt Disney Corp is taking over the country?
    I expect your series will be the first great art work of the Age of Dummies (foreshadowed by Magic, Chucky, and of course the insane Michael Redgrave sequence of “Dead of Night”). Don’t let the scary dummies get me! Interesting that just about all the living dummy dramas are tales of unspeakable horror. I guess the big thing is to stay out of the Uncanny Valley, but I expect Gisèle knows all about that.
    You know that psychological delusion that one actually is dead, but no one can see it? I think there’s a lot of that going around–in zombie fantasy, in automata fantasies, in Kip Kinkel kill-me fantasy. People think there ought be something other than this body we are dragging around and then they find, oh, maybe there isn’t anything. That is hard to imagine.
    I’m in Asheville this week. Restful. I got the nicest invitation to visit in France this year (near Chinon) but I can’t possibly afford it. I need to get to work on getting some grants or something or I’ll miss all the fun. Working as much as I can now, but I’m very reluctant to take on any distracting work for hire. I just agreed to work on a theater archive project, though, cause the pay was good.
    I’m reading up on Craft for a couple things I’m going to do in Asheville, and on Jonathan Williams for a book review. Certainly enjoying life.
    I wrote a little satire thing on Medium yesterday. It’s probably stupid but I laughed doing it, though ruefully and bitterly, as we always do now:
    At Home with the Santorums: An Unfortunate Drama

  6. Wolf

    Dennis, TV Reality Dude!
    Ok so the Arte thing is all contracted-up and shit? Are you getting paid yet? Jesus just how long has this been going on?? Fuck, I’m impressed you have lost neither the plot nor complete interest or hope by now… Talk about keeping you guys hanging. Is that just standard TV practice or were they being particularly slowpoke?
    I tried to get hold of the new Lynne Tillman the other day but it’s not being published in the UK I think. I was peeved. But I got the collected Madame Realism and am loving it, of course; all that arch snark is right up my street. Hey, you going to the US next week? Me too! Shame we won’t be in the same spot. I’m going to Boston, Albany and NY. And turns out the aforementioned Tillman teaches at Albany U, which I’m visiting (this is all work stuff, nothing very exciting) so I have a vague and unfounded hope of randomly bumping into her in the corridors and having to find something witty to say.

  7. Steve Erickson

    The best of luck with Arte! That sounds like a great idea. I trust French TV far more than American TV, but I would offer the cautionary note that I know someone who was co-writing a made-for-HBO movie that seemed like a sure thing, a very commercial concept with an actor attached, and then the powers at HBO changed their mind and decided not to produce it after several drafts.

    ZAMA is excellent. It actually has a lot of similarities with THE HEADLESS WOMAN, despite the obvious gender and temporal differences. As the title character, Daniel Giménez Cacho gives the best performance I’ve seen in a Martel film so far; Zama is the depressed flipside of Klaus Kinski’s Aryan conquistadors. My review will be out the week ending on April 13th (the film’s NYC opening date.)

  8. David Ehrenstein


  9. _Black_Acrylic

    Super congrats on the Arte TV news! That’s such an outstanding concept, and there’s no way in a million years it would make it to TV screens here in the UK. French culture is just so adventurous in comparison.

  10. Jesse

    a track I made:
    An edit of Kip’s confession, scored.
    I saw Darja Bajagić had some of Kip’s writing in the catalog for her show in london a couple years ago. …mentioned under the umbrella of Kip-as-muse.
    Looking forward to whatever the surprise is at the Art Center next Tuesday.

  11. JM

    I am not quite into water chlorination enough to get wordy but I am into water enough to be excited for the McElroy Book About Water that he’s been talking about for years. I also really like the fact that we clean our water by adding something pretty bad for us into it. That inherent oxymoron is part of what makes it one of the more methodically strange processes that remains actually important. RIP. Getting wordy in general has been weird lately though and I should find some new things to get interested in. Like Kip Kinkel.

  12. JM

    And, congrats on the preliminary (well, post-liminary?) steps to the Arte contract.

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