The blog of author Dennis Cooper

Mine for yours: My favorite fiction, poetry, non-fiction, film, art, and internet of 2018

(in no order)

Jeff Jackson DESTROY ALL MONSTERS (FSG Originals)

Jean-Jacques Schuhl DUSTY PINK (Semiotext(e))

Katie Jean Shinkle RUINATION (Spuyten Duyvil)

Troy James Weaver TEMPORAL (Disorder Press)

Danielle Dutton SPRAWL (Wave Books)


Lynne Tillman MEN AND APPARITIONS (Soft Skull)

Rebecca Brown NOT HEAVEN, SOMEWHERE ELSE (Tarpaulin Sky Press)

New Juche BOSUN (Kiddiepunk) & ADULT BABY (Amphetamine Suplhate)

Germán Sierra THE ARTIFACT (Inside the Castle)

Kyler James MERCURY’S CHOICE (Rebel Satori)

Shane Jesse Christmass YEEZUS IN FURS (Dostoyevsky Wannabe)

Sabrina Orah Mark WILD MILK (Dorothy, a publishing project)

Jamie Iredell THE FAT KID (Civil Coping Mechanisms)

Thomas Moore & Steven Purtill SMALL TALK AT THE CLINIC (Amphetamine Sulphate )

Johanna Hedva ON HELL (Sator Press)

Jennifer Natalya Fink BHOPAL DANCE (FC2)

Harry Mathews THE SOLITARY TWIN (New Directions)

Hector Meinhof THREE NAILS, FOUR WOUNDS (Infinity Land Press)

Laura Riding EXPERTS ARE PUZZLED (Ugly Duckling Presse)


Michael Seidlinger MY PET SERIAL KILLER (Cinestate)

Grant Maierhofer CLOG (Inside the Castle)

Ann Quin THE UNMAPPED COUNTRY (And Other Stories)

M Kitchell IN THE DESERT OF MUTE SQUARES (Inside the Castle)

Megan Boyle LIVEBLOG (Tyrant Books)



(in no order)

Eileen Myles EVOLUTION (Grove Press)

Dorothea Lasky MILK (Wave Books)

Michael Lally ANOTHER WAY TO PLAY: POEMS 1960–2017 (Seven Stories)

Joseph Grantham TOM SAWYER (Civil Coping Mechanisms)

Lonely Christopher THE RESIGNATION (Roof Books)

Jos Charles FEELD (Milkweed Editions)

Chiwan Choi ABDUCTIONS (Civil Coping Mechanisms)

Wayne Koestenbaum CAMP MARMALADE (Nightboat Books)

Shy Watson CHEAP YELLOW (Civil Coping Mechanisms)

Francis Ponge NIOQUE OF THE EARLY-SPRING (The Song Cave)

Rae Armantrout WOBBLE (Wesleyan)

Ariana Reines TELEPHONE (Wonder)

Thomas Moore WHEN PEOPLE DIE (Kiddiepunk Press)

Melisa Machado THE RED SONG (Action Books)

Terence Winch THE KNOWN UNIVERSE (Hanging Loose Press)

Lyn Hejinian POSITIONS OF THE SUN (Belladonna)



(in no order)


Kevin Killian FASCINATION (Semiotext(e))

Anne Boyer A HANDBOOK OF DISAPPOINTED FATE (Ugly Duckling Presse)

Peter Sotos INGRATITUDE (Nine-Banded Books)


Bill Berkson SINCE WHEN (Coffee House Press)

Jared Pappas-Kelley SOLVENT FORM: ART AND DESTRUCTION (Manchester University Press)


Gary Indiana VILE DAYS (Semiotext(e))

Jeff McMahon SIX MONOLOGUES 1990 – 2007 (NoPassport Press)

Antonin Artaud ARTAUD 1937 APOCALYPSE – LETTERS FROM IRELAND (Infinity Land)

Joshua Wheeler ACID WEST (FSG Originals)



Ishmael Houston-Jones FAT (Yonkers International Press)

Mark Fisher K-PUNK (Repeater Books)



(in no order)


Yikii 空虛之蝶 ❀ [nihil∞butterfly] (bandcamp)

serpentwithfeet SOIL (Secretly Canadian)


E Ruscha WHO ARE YOU (Beats in Space)

Mind Over Mirrors BELLOWING SUN (Paradise of Bachelors)

Guided by Voices SPACE GUN (GbV)

Sonae I STARTED WEARING BLACK (Monika Enterprises)

King Vision Ultra PAIN OF MIND (Ascetic House)

Tim Hecker KONOYO (Kranky)


Grouper GRID OF POINTS (Kranky)

Iceage BEYONDLESS (Matador)

Amnesia Scanner ANOTHER LIFE (PAN)

Rabit LIFE AFTER DEATH (Halcyon Veil)

The Breeders ALL NERVE (4AD)


William Basinski + Lawrence English SELVA OSCURA (Temporary Residence)


Brood Ma THE HANGOVER II (no label)

Pig Destroyer HEAD CAGE  (Relapse)

Dabrye THREE / THREE (Ghostly International)

Eartheater IRISIRI (PAN)

The Quick MONDO DECO (Real Gone Music)



(in no order)

Michelle Memran THE REST I MAKE UP

Jean Luc Godard THE IMAGE BOOK

Lucrecia Martel ZAMA


James Benning L. COHEN

Wes Anderson ISLE OF DOGS


Abbas Kiarostami 24 FRAMES


Gaspar Noe CLIMAX



Jean-Marie Straub GENS DU LAC



Michael Salerno NOTRE MORT



(in no order)

Adrian Piper A Synthesis of Intuitions, 1965–2016 (MoMA)

Reza Abdoh Retrospective (PS 1)

B Wurtz This Has No Name (ICA, Los Angeles)

Urs Fischer PLAY (Gagosian, NYC)

Aiko Hachisuka & John Williams Untitled (Van Doren Waxter, NYC)

Torbjörn Vejvi Within Their Shores P.L. (South Willard, Los Angeles)

Frances Stark Teen O.P.E.R.A. (Gavin Brown, NYC)

Vincent Fecteau ten works (Matthew Marks Gallery, Los Angeles)

Oscar Tuazon New Sculptures (Luhring Augustine, NYC)

John Ashbery Oh, What Fun! (Tibor de Nagy, NYC)

RAMMΣLLZΣΣ Racing for Thunder (Red Bull Arts New York)

Jack Smith Art Crust of Spiritual Oasis (Artists Space, NYC)

Jordan Wolfson Riverboat Song (David Zwirner, NYC)

Kara Walker …calling to me from the angry surface of some grey and threatening sea. I was transported (Hammer Museum, West Los Angeles)



(in no order)

Musique Machine
Original Cinemaniac
The Creative Independent
Shit Wonder
Volume 1 Brooklyn
Real Pants
Queen Mob’s Teahouse
dark fucking wizard
The Chiseler
espresso bongo
Experimental Cinema
The Wire
{ feuilleton }
The Los Angeles Review of Books
Solar Luxuriance
3:AM Magazine
largehearted boy
Tiny Mix Tapes
Open Culture
Locus Solus: The New York School of Poets
The Wonderful World of Tam Tam Books




p.s. Hey. So, there are my faves of the year. Granted that I’m sure I forgot some things that would be there, or didn’t see/hear/read things that would’ve been there if I had. As the post title said, I’d love to know what commenters’ 2018 faves are, if you feel like it. ** Doupe, Thank you very, very much! And greetings, and welcome to here! ** David Ehrenstein, Hi. The fact that that ‘God Jr.’ was uncharacteristic and differently challenging for me was part of the problem, it’s true. There was a bit of ‘oh, finally’ in the response that rubbed me the wrong way, and also some ‘but where’s the sex’ in the response that was equally confusing. So, yeah, it was … enlightening about what people expected or wanted from me at the time, I’ll say that. I think also the ‘privileged white male’ aspect of The Violet Quill hasn’t aged well. ** Kit-on, Hi. Mm, I have to say that living and learning seems for sure true based on how far I’ve gotten. Knowing and being close with young people is a huge boon on every level, I think. Most of my close friends have been younger than me forever, even when I was young. Strange. Mm, interesting thoughts on the situation here, thank you. This particular uprising is pretty different than the usual French outcrying. Some of what you’re saying fuels it is true, but there’s something else, something broader than the issues of class. Hard to pinpoint what it is, which is exciting about but scary. There’s vastness to it that doesn’t cause it to fall into the hierarchy you suggest easily. I guess it’ll become clearer. Probably starting today because Macron finally comes out of hiding and responds to this evening. Weirdness. ** Sypha, It did, and thank you again! It’s displayed proudly bestride my other two Xmas card arrivals so far: John Waters and Kevin & Dodie. The smoke looks too toxic and mystical to be pot, to my eyes. ** Misanthrope, Thank you. Mm, I don’t know. I think Holleran and Rechy are pretty different writers, but ‘voice’ is a lot of what a book is for me. I do think Holleran has or had some issue with not being or not thinking he was conventionally hot enough in the way that used to be of great importance back when a ‘clone’ look was considered paramount. Thanks about ‘GJr’, man. I do think the last section of that novel might be the best thing I’ve ever written maybe. Anyway, thank you, bud, you’re very kind. ** Bill, Thanks, Bill. Yeah, the protests got hairy, but definitely less hairy than last week’s, and my immediate area was quite quiet area this time unlike last time. Macron is coming out of hiding to do a big TV speech to the public tonight, and how he finagles that is going to going to make a huge difference. Right, we don’t SantaCon here, thank fucking god. It’s such an un-French phenom. Yes, ‘Burning’ is high on my to-see list although I think I might’ve missed its theater run here, I’ll find out. ** Kai, Hi. Your first comment registered. Like I might have said, there’s visibility issue with the blog, I don’t know why. Thank you about the gif fiction. Wow, you’re leaving and coming back that quickly. That’s wild. Yeah, I’ve never been to Japan in the winter. Really hoping to make that happen this time. ** Derek McCormack, Aw, thank you, thank you, great maestro! That mean a million-billion tons. How did the talk go? It was recorded or something, no? Or you’ll publish the ‘talk’ text, no? Yes? Lots of love, me. ** Steve Erickson, It’s too bad about SantaCon. In theory, in its basic premise, it has beauty potential, but … obviously not. Ritual of a dying age or something. Thank you about the gif piece. Maybe I’ll catch ‘Girl’ when I’m in the States in February. ** Will C., Hi, Will. Thank you very much! Well, by very coincidence, there’s a year wrap up on this very day. Huh. Take good care. ** _Black_Acrylic, Thanks so much, Ben. ** Nik, Hi, Nik. Wow, awesome, thank you a lot about the gif work. Yeah, I think it’s maybe the most thorough and realised/ finessed use of what the gif fiction form can be that I’ve managed so far. I think if one actually reads it as intended, it’s the most rich and generous in a weird way. I’m pretty excited about it, thank you. That makes sense about the containment issue on the chaos at the end. Showiness is an interesting device, tricky but very interesting to modulate. How’s the ironing going? Yeah, your guess about my confusion about the ‘God Jr’. in-progress reading is pretty right-on, I think. But the exposure in general was traumatic, yes. I don’t regret the decision because it probably effected the novel in some fruitful way, but it was a lesson learned too. Well, it’s true that reading from my current novel-in-progress in London had the opposite effect and made me more determined to go back and work on the novel. Perhaps, having taken so much time away, I ultimately was surprised and pleased to get such a positive response about my fiction since I hadn’t been concentrating on fiction at all for a long time. Maybe the good response was a reminder that there’s something I can do with written fiction that’s valuable or something. I’m not sure. It was curious. This week for me involves heavy work on the TV script mostly. We’re getting close to the deadline, and there’s a lot to do. So mostly that. See friends a bit. Stuff. You, how’s your week looking? Take care! ** Jeff J, Hi, Jeff! Great to see you! Thank you about the gif fiction. Yeah, I think it’s maybe my best thus far, something of a breakthrough, I don’t know. I did get a copy of your book, and I am nearly finished reading it very luxuriously. Things are good with PGL. Zac and I have taken things into our own hands a bit because our distributor over here is not at all adventurous, and a lot of very good things are in the works. It’s fine. No, we weren’t able to get the film script completely finished before the TV series script work ate us up again. So it’s on hold until at least after Xmas if not early next year, which is extremely frustrating even though there’s only a little left to do on the film script. The TV script is just so much work. Hopefully it’ll all pay off, and I think it will, but, man, I’ll never do anything so assignment-like and so much about finessing compromise like this again, I can tell you that. Lord. Have a great week, buddy! ** Okay. Again, there are my 2018 faves, or the ones I could remember, and what are yours (?), if you care to share and would be so kind, and, in any case, see you tomorrow.


  1. David Ehrenstein

    My favorite movies this year are Spike Lee’s “Blackkklansman” and Can You Ever Forgive me? (a work of obvious enormous literary interest.

    I’ll have to seek out that Bill Berkson. Got to meet the great man at a Beyond Baroque event about a year before he passed. We chatted about Frank O’Hara of course.

    Haven’t listened to much in the way of music save for —

    • Kyler

      My brother-in-law is the real-life Stephen Spinella character in the film. A conglomerate of a few autograph dealers actually, but basically a true story that my brother-in-law is responsible for exposing. He’s mentioned in her memoir.

  2. Kyler

    Dennis, thanks so much! I don’t really make these lists, but I mean it when I say that PGL was my favorite film of the year – and I look forward to seeing it again when it returns to NYC.

  3. Ferdinand

    Hi Dennis. Sweet to see you when logging into Buttmagazine (They feature an artist portriat everytime one does) and speaking of God jnr. I spotted it on Audible. Gosh opening twitter Onslaught press confronted my feed with video of a female parisian protester bleeding from her empty eye socket. Hell.

    Best of Book related: the only new thing I read this year was ‘My year of rest and relaxation’ which is morbid and funny enough to garner some attention I think. When Penguin (re) publishes this author’s (Ottessa Moshfegh) debut Mcglue, I think it would be something for you.

    Best of film related: I saw even fewer films than what Ive read but I found the documentary Shirkers fascinating and poignant (a young film student’s underground film gets stolen by her film mentor and never sees the light untill…)

    Happy festive season and def looking into some of these titles.

  4. Damien Ark

    Gah what the fuck! “Destroy All Monsters” did it before me. I had my book split in two different parts (Side A, Side B). LOL FUCK! Just goes to show if you wait long enough nothing becomes original and I guess my ideas are not original now. “The Fat Kid” sounds really interesting plot wise… It would be nice to see more plus sized / bigger characters in books as protagonists, although not so central or should I say a constant negative thing in a story though. I might pick that up though. Civil Coping Mechanisms published a poetry book called “I don’t write about race”, where the author came from Omaha (close to where I live). I found that kind of interesting to see 😛 . Great list btw. Thank you.

    Okay, the only shit I keep up with is music and I have to say that 2018 was very disappointing. Maybe I’m getting older and turning into one of those “music was better back then” kind of folks, even though I’m still a “millenial”.

    10. Glenn Jones “The Giant Who Ate Himself and Other New Works for 6 & 12 String Guitar”
    9. Ichiko Aoba “0”
    8. Autechre “NTS Session 4”
    7. Apartment House “Wanderer”
    6. Mika Vainio + Ryoji Ikeda + Alva Noto “Live 2002”
    5. Carl Stone “Electronic Music from the Eighties and Nineties”
    4. cv313 “analogue oceans”
    3. Clau Aniz “Filha de mil mulheres”
    2. King Crimson “Meltdown: Live in Mexico”
    1. David Garland “Verdancy”

    Omg. The shit in France looks really wild right now. I hope that you’re safe and avoiding the crazy fires and shit. At the same time I really wish that level of chaos was present in the US towards systematic issues we’re facing.

  5. Troy James Weaver

    Thanks for including Temporal on this superb list!

    Best book I read this year was Essays & Fictions by Brad Phillips, but it really doesn’t come out until next year I think.

    Also, Welfare by Steve Anwyll was great.

    Musicwise: been listening to a bunch of Dreamcrusher, specifically the album quid pro quo. (If u haven’t heard it, it’s a must)

    How are you? Hope all is great!

    • Adam Lehrer

      Dreamcrusher is excellent. Watched him do a show with Kill Alters last weekend.

  6. Jay

    Hi Dennis! I continue to envy the amount of books and music you consume. It’s kinda staggering, but I hope I can build up to that. I’ll stick to books and music as I’m not much of a film buff, though I did love Isle of Dogs, Hereditary and The Florida Project. My faves these year have been:

    Electrónica by Enzo Maqueira
    Pedro Páramo by Juan Rulfo
    Epitaph of a small Winner by Machado de Assis
    Music for Torching by A. M. Homes
    Suttree by Cormac McCarthy
    62/A Model Kit by Julio Cortazar
    120 Days of Sodom by the Marquis de Sade
    My Loose Thread by yourself

    Autobiography of Red, Antigonick and The Bakkhai, by Anne Carson (and Sophocles and Euripides)
    Dear Al-Qaeda by Scott Creney
    Field Work by Seamus Heaney

    You Won’t Get What You Want by Daughters
    Some Rap Songs by Earl Sweatshirt
    Your Queen is a Reptile by Sons of Kemet
    El Mar Querer and Los Angeles by Rosalía
    A Hairshirt of Purpose by Pile
    Crack-Up by Fleet Foxes
    The live KEXP gig from London band Black Midi, as they have no records out yet
    In A Poem Unlimited by U. S. Girls
    Emotional Mugger by Ty Segall
    Paraffin by Armand Hammer
    Iridescence by Brockhampton
    Rock and Roll Nightclub by Mac DeMarco
    Veteran by JPEGMAFIA
    Joy As An Act of Resistance by IDLES
    Astroworld by Travis Scott
    S/T by LUMP
    Whack World by Tierra Whack
    Daytona by Pusha T
    Tell Me How You Really Feel by Courtney Barnett
    Dirty Computer by Janelle Monae
    Death in Haiti by Felix Blume
    Virtue by The Voidz
    2012-2017 by All Against Logic (AKA Nicolas Jaar)

  7. _Black_Acrylic

    I was at the DCA earlier today to see their new show of work by two Glasgow-based artists who each had a gallery to themselves – an installation by Lorna Macintyre and films by Margaret Salmon. None of that could live up to the recent Mike Kelley – Mobile Homestead show, but what ever could?

    FWIW here’s my own 2018 faves:

    Barney Farmer – Drunken Baker (Wrecking Ball Press)
    New Juche – Bosun (Kiddiepunk)
    Sabrina Orah Mark – Wild Milk (Dorothy)

    Thomas Moore – When People Die (Kiddiepunk)

    Tao Lin – Trip (Vintage)
    Mark Fisher – K-Punk (Repeater)

    Dopplereffekt – Athanatos EP (Leisure System)
    Mica Levi & Eliza McCarthy – Slow Dark Green Murky Waterfall EP (Slip)

    Hereditary (Ari Aster)
    Climax (Gaspar Noe)
    Shoplifters (Hirokazu Kore-eda)

    Mike Kelley – Mobile Homestead @ DCA
    Cerith Wyn Evans – Composition for 37 flutes @ Hepworth Wakefield

    • _Black_Acrylic

      Thank you for including the Yuck ‘n Yum Compendium on your list!

  8. Bill

    Another super year-end list, Dennis. I’m so out of it, I didn’t know about the new Rebecca Brown, Kiddiepunk film, Carl Stone, Gary Indiana etc. So great to see a new edition of My Pet Serial Killer; it’s one of my very favorite recent novels. My shopping lists will be exploding with the new additions from your list.

    Quick stab at year-end favorites…

    Kevin Killian, Fascination
    Laird Hunt, In the House in the Dark of the Woods
    Maria Mitsora, On my Aunt’s Shallow Grave, White Roses have already Bloomed
    New Juche, Stupid Baby
    Denis Johnson, The Largesse of the Sea Maiden
    Colin Winnette, The Job of the Wasp
    M. Kitchell, In the Desert of Mute Squares
    Hector Meinhof, 3 Nails, 4 Wounds

    Graphic novels, art, photography etc:
    Jim Woodring, Poochytown
    Jonathan Hickman, The Black Monday Murders Vol. 2
    Jeff Lemire, Black Hammer Vol. 2
    Kaz Senju, Shinjuku Story Vol. 2
    Quay Brothers, The Black Drawings

    Music (jazz-y):
    Henry Threadgill, Dirt and More Dirt
    Ab Baars/Ig Henneman, Canzoni di Primavera
    Ab Baars/Ig Henneman/DaveBurrell, Trandans
    Roscoe Mitchell/Matthew Shipp, Accelerated Projection

    Music (improv, electronics):
    Norbert Moslang/Gunther Muller/Kurt Liedwart, Ground
    John Butcher/Dieb13/Gino Romair, A Geography for Plays
    Trio Sowari (Bertrand Denzler, Burkhard Beins, Phil Durrant), 3rd issue
    Kerbaj/Nakamura, East of Where?
    Escargot, Dart Love
    Jeremiah Cymerman, Decay of the Angel
    John Butcher/Dominic Lash/John Russell/Solberg, Stray into Darkness

    Music (composed):
    Brian Ferneyhough, La Terre est un Homme
    Michael Finnissy, Choral Vorspiele/Andersen-liederkreis

    Music (abstract pop-ish):
    Ben Lamar Gay, Downtown Castles can Never Block the Sun
    Cecilia, Adoration
    Ashley Paul, Lost in Shadows

    Sorry to Bother You
    The Endless
    Isle of Dogs
    The Little Stranger


  9. Sypha

    Ah, Dennis, these are always one of my favorite postings from you each year. It’s tough for me to do the book one because there are still a few books I wanted to get to that were published this year that I just never had the time for (maybe next year), but I certainly agree with some of your selections, such as DESTROY ALL MONSTERS, MERCURY’S CHOICE, the Moore/Purtill book and the two New Juche books (especially BOSUN). I would also add THE PROZESS MANIFESTATIONS and PROPHECIES & DOOMS by Mark Samuels, Denis Johnson’s THE LARGESSE OF THE SEA MAIDEN, the DROWNING IN BEAUTY and DECADENCE & SYMBOLISM anthologies put out by Snuggly, AIAIGASA by Quentin S. Crisp, CIVIL WAR by Simon Morris, WHAT IS ANYTHING? by S.T. Joshi, PLEASANT TALES 2 by Justin Isis, Damian Murphy’s THE STAR OF GNOSIA, Ramsey Campbell’s THE WAY OF THE WORM, Brendan Connell’s UNOFFICIAL HISTORY OF PI WEI, various graphic novels (THE ADVENTURE ZONE, THE PRINCE AND THE DRESSMAKER), and so forth. There were some good reprints this year as well, such as Jean Lorrain’s ERRANT VICE and Renee Vivien’s LILITH’S LEGACY.

    For music, I liked BAD WITCH by Nine Inch Nails, BLOOM by Troye Sivan, COLLAPSE by Aphex Twin, TOTAL XANARCHY by Lil Xan, DANCING QUEEN by Cher, THE LIGHT IS LEAVING US ALL by Current 93, DIONYSUS by Dead Can Dance, YOU DON’T GET WHAT YOU WANT by Daughters, the Lindsey Buckingham solo anthology, and the A STAR IS BORN soundtrack.

    For film, I enjoyed CALL ME BY YOUR NAME (technically a 2017 film but I didn’t see it until January 2018), the SOLO Star Wars film, and A STAR IS BORN. Weird that I’ve still yet to see ISLE OF DOGS, even though I have it on DVD.

    * * * *

    Speaking of Snuggly Books/HARLEM SMOKE, Snuggly Books has their new Winter Bundle up… the way it works is that if you buy a bundle you often get most of the books in it before the official release dates. There’s some interesting-looking titles in this one: in particular I am curious about Maurice Level’s THE SHADOW, Justin Isis’ “Neo-Decadent Manifesto of Women’s Fashion” (of which there will only be 36 copies, apparently!), and the Renée Vivien/Hélène de Zuylen de Nyevelt volume.

    My own novel HARLEM SMOKE is also part of this bundle. It’s available in both paperback and hardcover, though the latter is limited to 60 copies. Strike while it’s hot, is what I’m saying… though I’m sure some will still be around when the book becomes for sale individually on January 15th (yes, that’s the official release date).

    • Kyler

      thanks Sypha – and looking forward to Harlem Smoke – love the cover!

  10. rewritedept


    great list today. lots of books in there i’ve been needing.

    i am home sick today. went to the ER yesterday with an abscessed tonsil. it was terrible. i couldn’t eat or drink or swallow anything and it hurt to breathe and i woke up at 3AM feeling like i was having an asthma attack and couldn’t catch my breath for about ten minutes. so i’m on bed rest today and back to work tomorrow hopefully. on the plus side, my manager and coworkers all like me and seem like good people and it’s a definite plus in my book that i kicked ass on my first day while in the throes of peritonsillar abscess.

    that said, since i have the day off, i am going to finish transcribing my ‘destroy all monsters’ interview, which should be running over at xray soon.

    been in big bear about two weeks and i’m having a blast. went snowboarding last weekend for the first time in six or seven years, and rode better than i EVER have, which was encouraging. we had visitors this weekend, but they were very helpful.

    my favorite musics of 2018:
    gbv – space gun
    breeders – all nerve
    hot snakes – jericho sirens
    fucked up – dose yr dreams
    iceage – beyondless
    high on fire – electric messiah
    cursive – vitriola
    superchunk – what a time to be alive
    sm/jicks – sparkle hard
    yo la tengo – there’s a riot going on
    spiritualized – and nothing hurt
    sleep – the sciences
    thou – magus
    the body – i have fought against it, but i can’t any longer
    BODY/HEAD – the switch
    tony molina – kill the lights
    guided by voices – 100 dougs EP

    i didn’t see very many movies this year, but i LOVED ‘isle of dogs’ and ‘sorry to bother you.’

    i think the only new book i read this year was ‘destroy all monsters,’ but i might be wrong about that.

    i went to the library the other day and picked up a couple things. currently reading ‘geek love’ by katherine dunn and ‘the dying grass’ by vollmann, which is BLOWING MY MIND. next up will be ‘idoru’ by william gibson. our local library has no philip k dick, unfortunately, but i can request transfer from other branches of the san bernardino county library district. the only book of yrs they have in the whole county is god jr. which is kinda depressing.

    how’s tricks on yr end? coming to LA any time soon? i got tickets to go see spiritualized in SF next march. they’re playing the masonic temple, which is supposed to be an absolutely beautiful room. the night before that show, acid mothers temple are playing in reno, so i’m planning on going up and spending a week or so there, and then going to SF for a day or two before i come home.

    hope all is well. talk soon. love.


  11. Mark Gluth

    Dennis, dude! Thanks so much for including Notre mort in your list. It means a ton. You’ve had this experience so much more, but it’s weird and great to see stuff I wrote filtered through someone else’s process. Compared to my books, which are all me. Maybe it’s just the nature of collaboration? Michael and I are super proud of it, but our next thing is something that we both believe is going to be even better. We’ve been working on the screenplay in depth again of late, and I think we’re both like ‘ holy shit’ when we take a step back and review what we’ve made. I can only daydream with awe about what he will accomplish when he films it. So how are you? We’re well/swell. Oh yeah, maybe he told you but Steven/MANCY and I have a collab thing coming out as an add on to my next book that Kiddiepunk is putting out. Steven’s so great and I’m happy his work is getting out there more.

    I only have an informed opinion on music, so here’s my list. Love, Mark

    David Lang and Maya Beiser: The Day
    Daniel Avery: Slow Fade EP
    Rafael Anton Irisarri: Midnight Colours
    Mount Eerie: Now Only
    Preoccupations: New Material
    Christina Vantzou: No. 4
    Black Panther, The Album: Kendrick Lamar
    Sarah Davachi: Let Ligh Come On Bells End The Day
    Sarah Davachi: Gave In Rest
    Grouper: Grid Of Points
    Chris Reimer: Hello People
    Wax Chattels: Wax Chattles
    Caterina Barbieri: Born Again In The Voltage
    Catherine Christer Hennix: Selected Early Keyboard Works
    Aphex Twin: Collapse EP
    Low: Double Negative
    Oliver Coates: Shelley’s on Zenn-La
    Sandro Perri: In Another Life
    Tyshawn Sorey: Pillars
    Brian Eno and Kevin Shields: The Weight Of History/ Only Once Away My Son
    The Polish Sinfonia Luventuis Orchestra Krysztof Penderecki (Conductor): Penderecki Violin Concerto No 1 & Viola Concerto
    Fort Romeau: SPC-140
    Kim Kashkashian: JS Bach, Six Suites For Solo Viola
    Moonface: This One’s For The Dancer & This One’s For The Dancer’s Bouquet
    Protomartyr: Consolation EP
    Ian William Craig: Threshholder
    Jacques Greene: Fever Focus
    Melodium: Flumen
    Alessandro Cortini and Lawrence English: Immedieate Horizon
    Blake Mills: Look

  12. Dan Callahan

    I haven’t posted here in a while…I had a technical issue with commenting and got out of the habit. Just wanted to say hello and add a few things I liked/loved from this year:

    “Amazing Grace,” the Aretha Franklin concert film from 1972, finally released. This is the big deal for me from this year.

    “A Very English Scandal,” British limited series, Hugh Grant and Ben Whishaw, directed by Stephen Frears…fast-moving, biting, very funny, and finally touching precisely because it doesn’t try to be touching.

    “1985,” directed by Yen Tan…a real tearjerker, focused, intense, original.

    Two films that haven’t gotten an official release yet: Kent Jones’s “Diane” with Mary Kay Place, and the documentary “Making Montgomery Clift,” which was made by Clift’s nephew and contains lots of rare audio and home movie footage. Definitely look out for these two…”Diane” comes out in March.

    Finally, Faye Dunaway’s Gucci ad, which I watched over and over again, very happily, the day it was released. It’s the height of something or other.

    This has been a really great year for me because I got my novel “That Was Something” published by Squares & Rebels Press. This book means the world to me, and so I’m being really shameless, I realize, but I hope maybe I might find some interested readers here. I did a Q & A with The Paris Review to promote it, which was very exciting.

    Can’t wait to read Kevin Killian’s memoirs and more Lucia Berlin, and thanks for reminding me about that Duncan Hannah book that I had wanted to read but forgot about.

  13. Dominik


    One of my favorite posts of every year! Once again, thank you so, so, so, so much for including SCAB! It’s such an honor each and every time! I need to sit and think about my favorites but this time I really will collect them – last year I forgot, I just made the promise.

    I haven’t seen ‘Invasion of the Body Snatchers’ but the first buche does look like some kind of a pod. It makes it all the more freakish and attractive.
    This “innocence” made me think about all the huge and super-famous boybands – how they are clearly based on fanservice but how they also always stay somewhat… “teenage girl appropriate”. I mean, they do sing about love and even sex sometimes but always in this very simplistic and easily relatable and childish way. There is, however, a layer under this – with all the fan activity, the heavily erotic fanfictions and fanarts, etc. And I think this… charged atmosphere does come across at those shows, no matter how “safe” their lyrics might be. It’s strange that this was missing from the Hatsune Miku crowd, especially if one considers the whole hentai phenomena – how it even stands in for reality sometimes.
    Now, at the end of Monday, only 9 more days!!
    Oh, shit, no! Maybe behind another tiny window there’ll be two…? It reminded me of this tiny capsule I bought once when I was in a hugely depressed state: the ad said that every capsule contained a little message and it looked cute and it was almost for free and I never buy this kind of shit but I thought, hell, why not. I opened it and there was this miniscule purple paper in it and… and it was empty. Both sides. It completely devastated me, haha.
    Fuck, I’m sorry your back is giving you trouble again! Are you feeling better by now?
    The protests in Paris sound frightening. I hope they avoided your area!!
    My weekend was the usual so nothing very interesting from the outside, I guess. Just some reading and watching and looking for new music because I’m bored to death by everything in my collection right now.

    Have an amazing week, Dennis! See you on Friday!!

  14. JJStick

    Thank you for this, some books in common (Boyer, the wave books) and you gave me a bunch to look into.

  15. Scunnard

    Oh! Thank you.

  16. Steve Erickson

    I made a post here earlier today with my music top 10 list, but WordPress seems to have eaten it. I can no longer see it in the comments here. Anyway, here goes again:

    music top 10:
    3. Pusha T-DAYTONA
    4. U. S. Girls-IN A POEM UNLIMITED
    6. Dos Santos-LOGOS
    7. Rosalia-EL MAL QUERER
    8. CupcakKe-EPHORIZE
    9. Kacey Musgraves-GOLDEN HOUR
    10. Colin Self-SIBLINGS

    film top 10 (this may change before I submit my final list to Gay City News on Thursday, and I’m going by 2018 American releases but counting streaming availability in the US as a release):
    3. REVENGE
    4. ROMA
    6. CAM
    7. 24 FRAMES
    8. ZAMA

  17. Aidan Collins

    I was waiting for this list. Lots of stuff I’m excited to check out on here. Happy to see serpentwithfeet get a mention! soil’s a gorgeous album. Another standout album for me was Essaie pas’ New Path.

  18. Tosh Berman

    What a great list of goodies! Some I know, and most I don’t. Which is the way I like it when I approach your best of the year list. I like being turned on by things/artists that I don’t know of. Merci!

  19. Mark Stephens

    hey D…just popping by. I’m way behind on so many of your recent posts. In a way that’s cool…it will provide some much needed interest over the next week. Pete Shelley…sheesh. That really bummed me out. For my tastes, the initial run of singles (including Spiral Scratch) were so great. Every time one came out I couldn’t wait to get home and hear what new twist Shelley put on things. And the first two albums…oh man. Yeah…so that.

    Loved seeing the reissue Mondo Deco in your best of list…of course it had to be there…it is you after all. Plus I saw a reference to “Desperate Straights”! I no longer have my Slapp Happy albums…and now I really want to hear that! I recently was talking to someone about Frith…couldn’t really describe him. Weirdly I decided to point this person to the BBC live version of Tubular Bells that has Frith amongst the gathered suspects performing young man Oldfield’s stuff. Not very indicative of Frith…afterwards I kept thinking, “Why would you suggest that instead of “Guitar Solos” or “In Praise of Learning” (I think it’s the red Henry Cow that I particularly liked…but those brain cells are on on strike).

    Anyway…interminable painting of one of our bathrooms is seemingly finished…or at least that is the lie I’m telling myself for xmas. Also finished as a result is my lower back! blah. Okay, it’s dumb question time maestro…do have a favorite Christmas album? dunno why I ask…seemed like the thing to do!

    Love you so, my dear friend. Miss you.

  20. Jeff J

    Hey Dennis,
    Your year-end list is always my favorite and it made my heart burst to see Destroy All Monsters at the top of the page. I’m incredibly honored to have it included here and in such illustrious. Glad the finished copy of DAM made it to you, too.

    I’m behind on much and excited to use this and the other lists as a springboard for things to check out. Of things that are older but new here, I loved ‘Dusty Pink’ and the Francis Ponge, and just started ‘Vile Years’ which has exceeded my already high expectations.

    From new books that aren’t on your list, I can tell you the upcoming Richard Chiem is excellent. Loved Chris Reynolds’ deeply weird graphic novel ‘The New World.’ The visual art/text combo ‘And Yet My Mask is Strong’ by Basel Abbas and Ruanne Abou-Rahme has really stuck with me.

    New albums not on yr list, I loved Patois Counselors ‘Proper Release,’ Drinnks ‘Hippo Lite,’ the new Superchunk and Low albums, Steve Coleman’s ‘Live at the Village Vanguard’ volumes and the new Henry Threadgills.

    What is the Michelle Memran movie? And is the new Trecartin showing outside art galleries? Glad that the new Noe film was good, esp. since the last one felt like a disaster. Is it up to ‘Enter the Void’?

    I loved ‘Zama,’ ‘You were never really here,’ and ‘Other Side of the Wind’ (have you seen yet?) but so few new films have really given me a charge. Hope that’ll change as more arty fare opens here in the coming months.

  21. Krishnaton


    ghost stories
    the nun
    bad samaritan


    judas priest – firepower
    aic – ranier fog
    phil & the illegals – choosing mental illness as a virtue
    stone temple pilots – stone temple pilots
    deicide – overatures of blasphemy


    (oldies but goodies read this year)

    custers trials – tj stiles
    mussolini – denis mack smith
    w.w. jacobs – the monkeys paw and other stories
    the lady in white – wilkie collins
    collected ghost stories of charles dickens – charles dickens


    the closet pastels, Redon and others – Petit Palais, Paris
    Cesar – Pompideau – Paris
    the boys of Monastaraki square – Athens, Greece
    young, thin, homeless tranvestite – St. Pete, FL


    mushroom tartine, Place de Nation, Paris?
    ouzo cocktails at Rooster, Athens Greece

    Theres mine. Gonna try to eat better this year. Oh yes, my favorite, Dennis’ favorite movies. If I agree with a million things about you, your taste in movies is one of the best. I guess its true. I thought my life was going to be like so many peoples I know, predictable and comfortable. Oh young people are far out. They come up with the craziest shit. I sense a great joy in kids these days. I find people my age aloof and stranded. Early to mid 20s is just right. In my experience with labor unions and I have been union, my parents were union before they became managers, it all amounts to people not accepting their station. I come from a state and a time that was very pro-union and working-class values. Unions want to give people who dont deserve it things they dont deserve and that the companies and economy can no longer afford to provide. The middle-class has been unaffected in France. Tax cuts, colonialism, war, print more money, encourage business, I’m not an economist. It is a farce I’m afraid. All you can do is give in to thuggery, in truth its stealing from Peter to pay Paul. Europe is going broke and fast. As Sam Kennison said, “Why dont you move to where the food is? Ahhh!” Give me a few Occitane honies and Ill make you a rich man. A nice looking boy in Berlin looked at me and acted to cut his throat. Not sure whats in the air. The end of art, of history, of time, or just another country!

  22. Damien Ark

    a lil P.S.

    Still reading “close to the knives”. Weird that in my semester we watched a documentary on the AIDS epidemic, i work closely with an AIDS prevention project, then I’m reading this book, and it’s really heartbreaking. Wojnarowicz language is just incredible and full of rage within every page. Kind of now realizing how many of my favorite writers, painters, filmmakers died of AIDS during that time. Then I fucking see all of these young lgbt people that support conservatives, conversion therapy, anti-trans rights, blows my mind. There will be an era of people that don’t even remember the struggle for lgbt rights and that form of identity won’t mean anything. Anyway, hope all is well. <3

  23. JM

    Hi D.

    What a great list! I can’t compile one that spans forms as effortlessly as you and my list this year is rather euro-normative which I’m not massively happy about, but I’ll bite…

    Stupid Baby, New Juche
    The William H. Gass Reader, William H. Gass
    The Other Side of the Wind, Orson Welles
    The Haunting Of Hill House, Mike Flanagan
    The Image Book, Jean-Luc Godard
    Permanent Green Light, Dennis Cooper & Zac Farley
    Unsane, Steven Soderbergh
    Hereditary, Ari Aster
    First Man, Damien Chazelle
    Under The Silver Lake, John Cameron Mitchell
    Bojack Horseman (Season 5), Raphael Bob-Waksberg
    ye, Kanye West
    Double Negative, Low
    American Utopia, David Byrne
    Be The Cowboy, Mitski
    Some Rap Songs, Earl Sweatshirt
    Vernon God Little, The Court Theatre
    Alice, composed by Tom Waits, Free Theatre Christchurch
    ORBIT, Hagley Dance Company Graduating Class of 2018
    Les Miserables, Showbiz
    Astroman, The Court Theatre
    Gary Starlight! In Tents!, Jeff Clark

  24. Toniok

    Hello Dennis!


    – ‘Night’s Black Agents’ – Fritz Leiber
    – ‘Cara de pan’ – Sara Mesa (Have you read her? I think you can find her book ‘Scar’ in English, she’s great)
    – ‘Legends’ – Gustavo Adolfo Bécquer
    – ‘The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch’ – Philip K. Dick
    – ‘Vorrh’ – Brian Catling

    – El hijo ingobernable ( )

    – ‘The Third Murder’ – Hirokazu Kore-eda
    – ‘Ready Player One’ – Steven Spielberg
    – ‘Isle of Dogs’ – Wes Anderson
    – ‘Permanent Green Light‘ – Dennis Cooper & Zac Farley

    Take care!

  25. Misanthrope

    Dennis, Great lists. Hmm, I really don’t know if I’ve seen much new this year. Or read much new. I did read Less, the Pulitzer winner. It was aight. I did see this funny movie called Ideal Home a couple weeks ago that I liked. It was funny and that was good enough for me. PGL was the best film I saw all year. I’m dead serious about that.

    Oh, when I mentioned Rechy, I was talking content, the whole being gay in the past thing, what it was like for gays back then. Or supposedly was. There wasn’t really any new ground covered in Holleran’s book. Nothing eye-opening or anything. Style-wise, yeah, totally different. I like Rechy better.

    I get that with Holleran…his characters in this book really hate getting old and always feel too ugly and out of shape and all that. So funny because there are all these groups of gays now and everybody’s kind included -or at least has someone who likes their “type”- from twinks to bears to otters and all that crap.

    Usually, if I gift a book of yours to someone, it’s either God Jr or Try.

  26. James Nulick


    I really enjoyed your latest gif novel. There was an innocence to it, a charm, as young love is so often charmed due to inexperience, but there was also a sadness to it, knowing that young love doesn’t last. Beautiful.

    My favorite books of/read in 2018 —

    Laura Joyce — Luminol Theory
    Sayaka Murata — Convenience Store Woman
    Charles Bowden — Blue Desert
    Tao Lin — Trip
    D.M. Turner — Salvinorin
    New Juche — Bosun
    Dale Pendell — Walking with Nobby
    Tara Rodgers — Pink Noises
    John McPhee — Draft No. 4
    John Chase — Glitter Stucco & Dumpster Diving
    Terence McKenna — True Hallucinations
    Joe Eszterhas — Charlie Simpson’s Apocalypse

    Much love,

  27. Steve Erickson

    One self-serving interruption in the year-end festivities: my editor sent me a third cut of CULTURE SHOCK which I’m totally happy with. In fact, I would’ve posted it on YouTube already except that there’s one small mistake I want to her to correct: she misspelled my name in the closing credits. I hope she can quickly redo that and send me another cut, so I can post it ASAP (and then post the link here.)

  28. Josh Feola

    hey Dennis, long time no comment! I’m myopically focused on China as usual but here are some 2018 music highlights for me:

    Alpine Decline – Return to Desolation Lake (Maybe Mars)
    Guzz – 锦鲤 KOI (Babylon Records)
    Lonely Leary – Through the Park, Almost There (Maybe Mars)
    Zaliva-D – Sky Singing (SVBKVLT)
    Fazi – Dead Sea 死海 (self-released)
    Osheyack – Sadomodernism (Bedoin Records)
    Dream Can – Into Sparks (Maybe Mars)
    ayrtbh – Song of Anon (D Force)
    鸭听天 – 义乌情 (Spacefruity Records)
    Dolphy Kick Bebop – Smoke a Haiku Cigarette (Spacefruity Records)
    Li Daiguo – 鸟听 (self-released)
    Snapline – Shou Hua (Maybe Mars)
    Gooooose – Dong1 (D Force)
    33EMYBW – Golem (SVBKVLT)
    The Molds – Born Astride the Grave (Spacefruity Records)
    Alexmalism – TKO (Absurd TRAX)
    Fauxe – IKHLAS (Chinabot)

    and art:

    Lu Yang “Encephalon Heaven” @ M WOODS, Beijing
    Xu Bing “Thought and Method” @ UCCA, Beijing
    “Special Economic Zone” @ Long March Space, Beijing
    Mak Ying Tung 2 “The Anything Machine” @ de Sarthe, Beijing
    Huang Huan & Alexandru Damboianu “The Burden of Cultures” @ The Bunker, Beijing
    “Monks and Artists” @ M WOODS, Beijing
    “Entropy” @ Faurschou Foundation, Beijing
    “Machines Are Not Alone” @ Chronus Art Center, Shanghai
    Vivien Zhang “Codescape” @ Long March Space, Beijing

    hope you’re doing well!

  29. brian bauman

    Always love yr year in review! Thanks for the recs!! Here’s mine:

    Eileen Myles – Evolution
    Denis Johnson – Largesse of the Sea Maiden
    Andrea Lawlor – Paul Takes The Form of a Mortal Girl
    Gary Indiana – Vile Days
    Nick Drnaso – Sabrina
    Wesley Yang – The Souls of Yellow Folk
    Ben Marcus – Notes from the fog
    Sarah Schulman – Maggie Terry
    Rita Bullwinkel – Belly Up
    Kevin Killian – Fascination

    US Girls – In a poem unlimited
    Neneh Cherry – Broken Politics
    Amen Dunes – Freedom
    Sink Ya Teeth
    Beach House – 7
    London Suede – Blue Hour
    Matthew Dear – Bunny

    Daisy Kenyon

  30. Adam W Lehrer

    First, my favorite art of 2018 can be read on the blog section of my artist website (i’m an artist so that’s my domain of bonafide expertise ya dig?):

    Now, music (in order): The Body ‘I have fought against it,’ gabe gurnsey ‘physical,’ nine inch nails ‘bad witch,’ daughters ‘you won’t get what you want,’ jpeg mafia ‘veteran,’ insecure men ‘s/t,’ lana del rabies ‘shadow world,’ gnod ‘chapel perilous,’ ora iso ‘image certifies,’ kids see ghosts, yves tumor ‘safe in the hands of love,’ guttersnipe ‘my mother the vent,’ marie davidson ‘working class woman,’ gazelle twin ‘pastoral,’ pig destroyer ‘head cage,’ eartheater ‘irisiri,’ sleep ‘the sciences,’ chris carter ‘chemistry lessons,’ sumac and keiji haino ‘american dollar bill,’ and number 20 goes to low ‘double negative,’ a band i never gave much two shits about but after a friend recommendation that one soundtracked many insomniac nights drinking coffee smoking pot and making collages while my obnoxiously deep sleeping girlfriend snored dreaming about whatever the fuck. great year for music, 2018 was. loved how so many artists put so much rage into their music (dance metal pop, whatever), lots of things sounded urgent and made me excited about sound.

    films: 1. hereditary (ari aster) (horror movie of the last 20 years) 2. the favourite (yorgos lanthimos) 3. mandy (panos cosamatos) 4. first reformed (paul schrader) 5. suspiria (luca gudaagnino, fuck all who didn’t get what magnificence of this transgressive arthouse feminist horror headfuck) 6. roma (alfonso cuaron) 7. burning (lee chang dong) 8. destroyer (karyn kusama) 9. black kklansman (spike lee) 10. a star is born (bradley cooper) (fuck you this movie is an oddity, an expansive beautiful expensive hollywood romance movie made for adults, no capes no powers no shiny objects just hot leads obsessed with each other singing country rock mediocrities and banging oxies ill fucking take it) 11. zama (lucretia martel) 12. the wild boys (bertrand mandico) 13. the house that jack built (second rate lars von trier is still the most intellectually provocative filmmaker on the planet) 14. possum (matthew holness) 15. not a quiet place or black panther or any of the really really dumb artistically bankrupt films that lazy critics all jump on board with that shit is my enemy (steve mcqueen’s widows was ok but it felt like watching a 10 hour netflix series condensed into 2 and 20 minutes and the cinematic/visual impact was thoroughly downgraded because of it

    literature is the hardest for me to keep up with (there are still so many old books that I seldom am ever reading something that just came out, unless it’s journalism and telling me what the fuck i need to be knowing), nevertheless I did read a few new titles that blew me away.
    First, not to jump on the bandwagon but Otessa Mosfegh’s ‘My Year of Rest and Relaxation’ is a masterpiece, she feels connected to Bret Ellis somehow but through the feminist gen y lens instead of the disconnected gen x ass holes. Nevertheless, like Ellis, Mosfegh’s prose is simultaneously relatable, transgressive, and hyper literary. I also really liked Rachel Kushner’s ‘The Mars Room,’ though less than ‘The Flamethrowers’ (came out when I was in art school so it was a moment. Jeff Jackson’s ‘Destroy all Monsters,’ Tao Lin’s Terrenc Mckenna book, new Peter Sotos,

    • Adam Lehrer

      Also, I bought Gary’s ‘Vile Days’ the day it came out. Incredible.

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