The blog of author Dennis Cooper

Please welcome to the world … Grant Maierhofer Flamingos (ITNA Press)



‘Faced by hospitalizations, therapies and rehabilitations, the characters in Flamingos are in a permanent state of psychological mutation. In exchange for melancholy reminiscences about their mundane existence, false messiah Simon holds out a promise of release from the drudgeries and depressions of Middle America.

‘Grant Maierhofer’s polyphonic voice formally recalls such Modernist masterpieces as Virginia Woolf’s The Waves. Nonetheless, this book is wholly his own, a brilliant, idiosyncratic exploration of the fragmented twenty-first-century mind.’ — ITNA Press




‘This work will be a nightmare. You are no detective.” This is a noir without the proper detective to piece back together the crime and its narrative. This is self-surveillance under the influence of drugs, art, poetry. Without the narrative cure, the novel becomes sick: “Here the plague again. I’d read once of a fictive plague and a city essentially turned to chaotic police state rot… One thinks as well of the art created then and its constant incestuous vein.” The narrative can turn into a police state of rot or incest. Maierhofer has put his mind to exploring the pustules of this plague “pumped through imagined tubes into the skulls of various Americans and Elsewhereicans.’ — Johannes Goransson, author of Haute Surveillance and Dear Ra

‘Part Beckett, part Unabomber manifesto, part Laurie Weeks, Grant Maierhofer’s Flamingos is singularly alive and wild. Despite its explicit, fascinating cast of characters and influences, the book’s voice is energetically original and strange. Each wrought sentence makes manifest a rapacious linguistic and cultural appetite, along with a world-transforming alchemy.’ — Maggie Nelson, author of Bluets and The Argonauts

‘Permutating along a fine line between culture and trash, theoretical reality and actual reality, Gucci and Mayhem, Maierhofer’s Flamingos invents a way of thinking about our world and what’s left in it that feels at once schizophrenic and clear as lube, as much like a map or index as a New Novel in an era where there can almost no longer be a novel at all, but information. Here’s some information you’ll want to bang to the front of the plague-strung queue while you still have eyes.’ — Blake Butler, author of 300,000,000

‘Elliptical, surgical, Flamingos is also grim, smart, funny and syntactically menacing, a kind of fictional oral history of what one character calls ‘an American Darkness.’ Grant Maierhofer plays for serious stakes.’ — Sam Lipsyte, author of The Ask

‘A luminous whirlwind of language, emotion and wit, Flamingos cuts through the lethargy and indifference of our lives and our lit with style and rage. This writing is a blast!’ — Jeffrey DeShell, author of In Heaven Everything is Fine and Arthouse


Buy ‘Flamingos’ @ Small Press Distribution
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Meet Grant Maierhofer


Related imagery









Related videos

Rudimentary Peni – “Death Church” (full 1983 album)

John Lennon- Mother (8X Slower Primal Scream)

Kathy Acker Docu by Alan Benson New York 1984


Excerpt (Opening)



Patient – a neurotic, poring over lived experience and print

Flamingo – a daughter, sunlit, driven by manias

Edmund – a viewer, a depressive, concerned with sight

G.G. – a criminal, involved with strains of black metal, survivalist

Attila – a driver, lover of his auntie, thinker

Simon – a healer, a messiah, M.D., D.C.L., L.L.D., Ph.D.

Haydn – a son, former love interest of Flamingo, caregiver

Eileen – a niece, preoccupied with bloodline, marked with loss

Olivier – a witness, Simon’s cohort, misfit youth


As you walk out of the valium of death
a sad feeling limps around your brain
funny farmers sowing seeds of discontent
pumping nerve gas around unfeeling veins

“Happy Farm” – Rudimentary Peni

A story? No. No stories, never again.

In Heaven Everything is Fine – Jeffrey DeShell



A cackling life inside, a smear of bellylaughs spat back at tellings of doctors, explorers, manipulators. There He dictates with some solution. Spread through cities and guts and the entrails of homelives or families, the presence and he says what’s done. Slid easily back into the comfort of loss—step one, repetition, regurgitation of psychobabble—we did His will to varying degrees of efficacy; he had his say and we were merely subjects. Out out their eyes would look and sweep. Waves of grass and promise lumbered up against the buildings as streams of hope, possibility, taunt. His voice mad of distraction and mother’s milk. His arms earthplates of welcome into what could be. Simon, not a man, not a man. Simon, our teething on his light and what would come. Simon, a future, a renewal. Burnt again and born again our bodies clayshells dripped of ideology to embrace the Father, embrace Simon. A plague of cure-alls, panaceas, SSRIs, MAO inhibitors, breathing exercises, consultants, meetings, rooms, plastic furniture, sweatdrops left from anxious bodies too medicated in various heats never converging. Simon, his own renewal never. Simon, constant drilling awareness of all minutiae and no substance building every hoveled life in cities. He heads south to find a grave in Florida; more followers to meet the beck and call. He topples amid manifesto language and yearns to beat back against the pulse of protest in his times. Simon, ever the miserable failure. Simon our Christ, our Cunt Fear our Cock Fear our Man Fear our Woman Fear our Plague Fear our Head Fear our Love Fear our Death Fear. Simon he lives and dies for his own sins, not ours. Simon’s a polyglot mumble found in waves, in graves, in gutless darknesses beneath wherevers. Simon would wander etching missing notes to sidewalk wondering why they’d dropped in for thinking ever. Simon assembled the passage, the mode. Simon put together the festering, saw what might be done. Ordered and disordered whole gasping last breaths of fathers lost in death while the thumbs twiddled at the wheel of his auto outside belighted storefronts. Scrapped together and wrapped up to be found by some moralist of Hawthorne’s gape and reach. There is no puzzle etched in chalk—it is his missive. It is fetish. It is leatherine. He’s hobbled obsessed with evering death. His mother a jovial plot of mothers, a husking, a collective. His father whatever protest against the aforesaid, and mayhaps a bit of mistaking, mistaking. Simon doesn’t plan our lives, just mumbles at the bodies while they pass.


You have begun to sift through notes to find something revealed. The incessant in this place, the schizophrene. You’ve attempted to grind meaning out of the gaggle; their therapies your only connective point. You have not heard voices so much as intuited nauseas. You’ve fed yourself on bad coffee spreads in hospital and within homes of loved ones kind enough to take you after hands began to slip. The world would not be righted. His take on things suddenly gained perspective, now a straitjacketed old man occasionally seen mumbling on newsfeeds about some great redemption. You began a search backward into heads, perhaps avoiding your own. With each change you only hoped to black your walls.


Call me Flamingo; whatever it was is fading. I sat atop where I happened to live just being. Outside my work inside my car I’d slug at sugary black liquids that energize. I programmed, encrypted. Where I existed was within a city no longer operating as a city, rather a pustule. His alterations to the landscape, the mentalities. I call it pustule and had no friends there. I walked like Travis in Paris, Texas in the clothing come across mostly in stores secondhand. No safety zone. There will be no safety zone. I had no commitments, had broken no marital code, to my thinking. Thirty-four years and my ex-husband and I got divorced when I turned thirty-one and told a falsehood regarding a pregnancy. He wouldn’t shut his mouth about wanting to put children inside my medicated guts. He was an oafish man with long ambitions and consistently short haircuts who I met and engaged with physically, the result of a website that allowed couples to couple and put their parts to use.


Having no more patience for the journal, the diary, the anything approximating a brief lament quasi-essay interrogation of what you’ve read, watched, listened to, you enact this. An assemblage. Your research. The work. You do not care. It will exist time to time and will account for what has existed between times and times. It will not delve in any capacity. Let them face it: it is fairly dead; there is only now a pissy teenaged scrawl. Embittered voices asking after daddy.


I didn’t ever love him but he collected bad films and we watched them and ate pizzas and there was something loving to it, I daresay. My teeth are goners like the betrothed as a result of meds and energetics. I feel such an urge to tell. We’d sworn in various ways not to unveil the various things he’d put inside our skulls. I watched footage of his ECT and guess I pitied the man. Perhaps before this I was converted. His reach was that entire. Picture the doctor describing the procedure as Simon’s pinned to leather chair bound in cuffs of same just moments before his mouth is stuffed of rubber and his body seems to shake itself loose. Undefined gluey rivulets came forth and doctor returned to speak softly about its result, its promise, what might come to be expected. He’d acquired it on receiving permission to research this and more and used its grant money to record himself starved beneath his home in lurid shades.


I cannot profess to have known the man, or wake up and proceed as his follower. I do not do the “how I came to be this way” as is their wont, the ilk’s wont, so here I piddle. The storied. Newsprint. I’ve burnt his telling to my brow and thus am culpable, required to speak whereof I do not know. Archivists have asked after the recordings. I’d pirated them occasionally for late viewings and meditation. I’ve kept them boxed with annotation; some home recordings from his trials.


Say for instance one weekend I visited my auntie where she lived and we’d come together? I’m not sure of preferred terminology in matters but I know where I stand. You live outside moralizing as such and a body like Simon comes easy. I’ve picked up a bit here and there; the rest I give to him and auntie. I haven’t seen much but you see enough sleeping amid thirty or more heaped metallic crates hauling whatever needed wherever. Simon came to me those nights. He’d driven to set funding aside; saw his route as shamanic. I’d followed briefly. Was then the learning took. Read a bit, not much. Lots on plague, sure. I guess I never shook the notion that the world had just, or was soon to just, lost most of its presence, say?


When you became roughly twenty-four and one-half years old you became a follower of Star Trek. It was late, and the fondness grew from a likeness you saw between its creator and images of L. Ron Hubbard—you needed religion. Hubbard’s voice seemed to flood the sixties for you, this syrupy drawl, moneyed, tyrannical. Perhaps a surrogate father, though you’re hesitant to welcome it. Grown men sitting before microphones arguing over the state of things; the mind, humanity, children. It might be here your vulnerability began.


And I taught them. And did not. To resist their obsessive teeth. To grind their desires to a bulb, then watch it burn. And there is no hemlock, no way out; I, therefore, walk aside with the mud and silt, and you become my enemies. I do not know how to speak it, to think, “I, Simon, become difference, or God.” I have nothing to say. You and I cannot judge you and I. Now the time comes, I think, to make something known. I began to witness all, and remained with them delivering the judgment of a man; I retched, became as lofty as your walls. My followers more my fathers and mothers than I their leader. It becomes the other hand, you, not to the soul, there is no wrong against you, and yet a rope grows around my throat. I did not learn anything. I’ve never found a bad fellow in the house of the mad. Everyone in me, their language, and the desire of circumstances aside, the asylum is not where I shall lay. It would not be an apt turn, sad, and you took hold of me not as a good man, but death itself. The doctors you have to say? The medicine speaks in dull, dumb, blind tones and incoherent even. If you become deaf, mute, blind, what you do echoes. Ridiculous, I’ll show you. It’s what I showed each of them. But it is good that all is well. Nothing to do with the question, your questions, it makes no difference, as all are one. It is perfect. There is God. He is seated within your walls to right and left of me. It is your God, a parent. And that is God. But let me speak: the power of the Father, there is no other, bleeds much more than you think. You imagine things, fabricate diseases. A man thinks, then set aside by the dose, or the sessions; if they do not do it again, you sell that sense of newsprint, public opinion, video, as you have hung up to spite me. I did not what you now do. You do not have to kill out of my mind because it is rotting; you all in front of all to string me up. And the beginning of all my children they are your own, they hear and turn back the face of the doctors. I do not care. And I never hesitated, only showed them how to do something good for the good of the all, what you think is evil. Your mothers in the newspapers to write things that you will not tell me, you forget me in the asylum. To eat the flesh and to desire, to the teeth, a being better than your own. Tell you the same way, you send out to find my head. Your own wickedness loud enough. What are you and your descendants. Each of you the picture of right and good against my hands.


“Attila! Attila!” a sort of gull’s crack from youth chimes me back. I know my mother well in memory. Sat high above the earth in my employ, there is coherence; an aftermath, a settling. A wind might push through and scrape against the metals, or heat stopped for coffee against the chest and cheek. Go on runs see other sides to people, ugly, feral families driving from vacation to its opposite. Go on runs and neglect myself for weeks or so. Simon capitalized on as much. Easy to see the emptying spirit I guess. Easy to spot a man nearing on some life-death dilemma. We spoke of what we’d seen. He told me of various tortures, new ways out he’d carved. I listened and slurped at cans our feet both wrapped in wool and up against his dash as night proceeded. He’d experienced shock, insulin therapy. He’d met brilliant physicians, philosophers. He’d seen a youth bury his hands in a jar of water designated for Jaques Lacan. He spoke well of matters so I felt sharp, less dumb. He prompted my speech. I’d once met a boy on the street in New York and talked over the state of things while he broke from loading something into a gallery. I’d once emptied myself on the longest stretch of desert I’ve seen without car or human presence in sight. My family became immaterial beyond the cat on lap or memories of fattened weekends on auntie’s couch and I’m quite at peace in an American darkness. Today sat in bath with filth and limbs stretched out and intermittent dose of scalding water on ankles. Home for several days, maybe the boredom would swell, thick and pungent. I’d visit auntie’s and come away round and shining. I drive a small pile of plastic guts while off the road. My father might be sickened at my indolence.


In your schooling you’d learned well to subvert commonly-understood histories in favor of something postcolonial that accounted for the cruelties of mostly White Men since the Dawn, and it was in this way you’d entered the narrative of Gene Roddenberry, terrified and useless as a newborn. Not dissimilar, you met Simon through the texts consulted and eventual correspondence where he’d become a number. He now submits experimental essays to the PEN Prison Writing program. Young girls wrote him letters and he’d respond with sheets of toilet paper scribbled through with stories about the end of Nature, the end of God, a new beginning for the human race, a revelation, a plague, anything to set their teeth on edge. He’d become imprisoned and institutionalized after any number of things. You’d watched with some disdain his testimony as it seemed to lose coherence, heft. He’d sent a list of possible wives at one point wanting you to see. You assembled what you could in going forward, occasionally pulled back to the work that seemed to embrace simply surrounding yourself with souls.





p.s. Hey. Today the blog has the honor, privilege and fun to help usher in (out?) the new novel by the extraordinary writer and long time local of this place Grant Maierhofer. I’m most of the way through reading ‘Flamingos’, and I can tell you it’s a very fantastic novel, so do explore the samples and info about it today and consider picking up your own copy if everything adds up. Thanks a lot! And thank you, Grant, for letting the blog do its small part. ** Gregoryedwin, Hi, Gregory! I’m so pleased you’re taken with his work. Like I said, I’m brand new to it myself. I hope all is as great as humanly or even inhumanly possible with you, man. ** David Ehrenstein, Hi. My impression is that his work is essentially unknown outside of France. Oh, ha ha, thank you for campaigning for LCTG. That’s so awesome of you. I would love to have been a been a fly on those walls just to see the other critics’ befuddled faces. I have no interest in seeing ‘Moonlight’ based on what I hear and know. ** Tosh Berman, Hi, Tosh. Yes like I said, his work was unknown to me too until I read paeans to him occasioned by his very recent death. Very special work. I hope that his work’s visibility is increased by the tragically belated kudos at the very least. ** Dóra Grőber, Hi, Dóra! I’ll tell you the buche winner(s) for sure. Traditionally, I usually photo document the chosen buche’s unboxing and destruction by mouth, and I’ll try to do that this year too. ‘Never “motionless”‘: a perfect way to put it. Okay, the tattoo festival sounds quite fun enough, if not what you’d imagined. You’re going to buy a machine? Do they look cool? I’m imagining so. I guess I’m imagining they look sort of like a Goth dentist’s drill. Which is probably too … romantic?  My yesterday was kind of hectic. First, right after I launched the blog, I managed to accidentally hit my head on something and rip a hole in my left ear, which took about an hour to stop bleeding, and my ear still looks a little scary, and then I had to rush to meet the real estate agent at the apartment I was to check out. I waited, but he never showed up. It turns out he gave me the wrong address, but then he  was very pissy about it and tried to blame me for the mistake, so I’m not sure if I’m going to reschedule that visit or not. Then I met with Gisele to talk about this new dance piece I’m working on with her. That was good, and I have a bunch of work to do on that today. Then I met up with Zac, who’s not completely better but was feeling okay enough to meet and look at some art. That was great, of course, and we did some planning for all the stuff we need to start doing right now to get ready for our upcoming film shoot. We went to the Centre Pompidou mainly to see the Cy Twombly retrospective. It confirmed my pre-existing opinion that his paintings are self-coddling, privileged, excessively tasteful, overly precious stuff whose reverential treatment by the whitest, most effete contingent of the art world is boring. But still, it was worth doing. Then Zac and I walked around, talked, and that was great, and then I came home, by which point it was near bedtime. So, not an uninteresting day, all in all. How was Tuesday for you?  **  New Juche, Hi, Joe. Yesterday was crazy, so I finally was able to get ahold of your new book this morning, and I’m excited to open it.  On ‘Death of Louis XIV’, well, it was more thoughtful and aesthetically  rigorious/curious than I had imagined it would be.  The tone is odd and  interestingly maintained. Like that. I was given the wrong address, so I didn’t see the apartment. Maybe I’ll see it this week, we’ll see.  There are some experimental filmmakers working with Super8, yes. It can be hard to see their work because many of them think their work is too compromised when uploaded onto Vimeo, etc. And because, generally, the work being done in that format is highly experimental/personal, and the venues for that work are few and far between. **  Ferdinand, Hi. Cool, good move to upload your photos. I look forward to seeing. ‘Lolita’ in Dutch is a very funny idea. Well, based on having been able to speak Dutch at least rudimentarily back in the 80s.  Thanks, man, about the blog, and have an excellent week yourself.  **  TomK, Hi, Tom. Yeah, the wood block one is a sleeper hit.  **  Steevee, Hi. Oh, gosh, of course I hope you do like LCTG. And your vote, if so, would be very kind. Yes, it had no theater distribution at all, anywhere, due to its producer’s nefarious business practices. I tried a little more Heron Oblivion, and it’s growing on me. The Fairport Convention meets Iommi comparison is very cool. I like that.  I do know of Lionel Soukaz. I think I’ve only seen a few of his short films, which intrigued and impressed me. Interesting: I’ve been thinking of doing a post about his work here, and you mentioning him seems like the checkered flag to do that, so I will. Well, it’s true that it’s not easy at all for me to find people my age or even fairly close to my age who maintain an interest in new, more experimental music. Or film or literature, frankly. I’ve never understood why that interest declines with aging, but yeah. Mm, well, aren’t the films that you seek out as a critic shaped to a considerable degree by your understanding of what kind of films your experience tells you editors will be willing to have covered? Which means it’s through no fault of your own. If you were wtriting about film for, say, The Wire, it would be a different story, but then you would also basically be writing for free, which is not fair for you.  **  Joakim, Hey!  Yeah, that two-plus month Google war was so stressful. It was surprising and heartening to find out how much worldwide support the blog has. That was amazing, And I won, shockingly. But at the time, it was scary and horrible, for sure. Great that you might come to Paris! I’d love to meet Asger. As you might know, Michael and Bene are in Italy waiting for the birth of their child, which should happen any day. I think they’re back here in early January. I should be mostly here. Zac and I are getting ready to shoot our new film at the end of March, but I think, other than some day trips to Bas Normandie where we’ll be shooting most of it, I should be here. If you do make plans to come, just let me know in advance, and we can make sure that M, B, and I are here. Cheap-ish hotel? I can check and ask around, and I will. Wow, only just briefly clicking over to look at your recent work, it looks incredible!  I didn’t know that you’re making three-dimensional works. I’ve been out of it, obviously.  Wow, the work looks absolutely fantastic. I’m going to spend some real time over there when I finish the p.s. Congratulations, pal. I would love to talk with you about it. Another reason I hope you’ll come on down here.  Great! Love, me.  **  Jamie, Hi Gem-y. (as in ‘a precious or semi-precious stone, especially when cut and polished or engraved’).  Newcastle. All I know about that place is the most ultra-clicked thing, i.e. that coals are bound for it for some reason.  My Monday was busy, had its ups and downs. See my description to Dora. I read a couple of Bartlett’s books back when we were press-mates. Let me think. Oh, ‘Ready to Catch Him Should He Fall’ and ‘Mr. Clive and Mr. Page’. I remember that were quie good but not quite my thing. I think his main thing is plays, no? Or was?  Excellent Tuesday to you, and I hope everything continues to go really well there where coals are bound. Tell me please.  **  Misanthrope, Well, he went on to made experimental documentaries. It happens, man.  Comet Ping Pong … oh, is that the pizza place where Clinton runs her child sex ring?   ** Kyler, The article was exellent, my friend. Kudos, and I learned stuff too. You sound really good. Excellent!  **  Armando, Hi, man. I thought your words about Haynes were a bit harsh, yes. Apples and oranges and all of that. Well, based on what you wrote about Jos Charles’s book, I think I can safely, ha ha, say that you and I live in very different worlds and heads. I eat at least one Xmas buche per year. Well, not all of  it ‘cos I share it/them with pals. I don’t think those slave sites necessarily even existed back when I was writing ‘The Sluts’. ‘The Sluts’ was derived from the form and goings-on of a now-defunct website where clients reviewed escorts.  I have no idea how many of the slave profiles are sincere, legit, etc. I think most them are people fantasizing aloud, but I don’t know. Ha, if you went to see ‘I Apologize’ in February I guess I would think that you must be very wealthy to spend that much money to do something so peripheral. Later, gator.  **  Okay. Return to welcoming Grant’s novel into existence, please. See you tomorrow.


  1. Good news on a monday. Looks like I will be visiting Belgium again just a week after new Year’s. Might get to see Amsterdam finally and much sooner than I thought.

  2. Dennis,

    I could definitely read this. I love the description of it as a mix between Beckett and the Unabomber Manifesto. The YouTube intrview was cool, too. I always love hearing about other writers’ processes.

    Also, I have a poetry chapbook coming out in the Spring. I’ll let you know more details as they arise.

    Also also, still mulling over guest post ideas for the new year …. I’ll e-mail you soon with ideas.

  3. Grant Maierhofer, this looks fantastic and I love the way humour is operating in some of the extracts as a kind of cooked out by product, as a tallow for the soap we need to put in our mouths.

    Also, the Kathy Acker documentary is a real gift. I’ve been wanting to see that for a while and didn’t know it was available.

    Dennis, the last sentence of this made me laugh: ‘Cy Twombly retrospective. It confirmed my pre-existing opinion that his paintings are self-coddling, privileged, excessively tasteful, overly precious stuff whose reverential treatment by the whitest, most effete contingent of the art world is boring. But still, it was worth doing.’

  4. Hey Dennis,

    <3 Thank you so much for the kind words.

    What! I did not know they're expecting, but that's exciting news. Omg, congratulations to them! My brother just had twin boys, Liam & Leon, I can't wait to meet them when I go to Stockholm in two weeks. They're fraternal twins and scorpions like me and my brother. So far they both look and seem very different from each other.

    My friend Louka who's also doing his MFA here but is from Paris told me we could possibly stay in his parents apartment in February and that he would like to join. But only if his parents decide to take a trip a to Senegal. So let's see… *Hopeful*

    I would love to meet Zac as well! Eli told me great things about him. Sounds like he had a great time in Paris with you last summer.

    Right now I'm working on 2 separate text pieces for a fanzine I would like to make, that would mostly be concerned with tension between love, fetish and technology. The plan is to invite a bunch of contributors, both text-based and visual. I have about 10 people in mind so far, Eli is of course invited already. It would be non-profit and I'd do layout myself and make it in school, so pretty limited most likely…

    One of the pieces is a tribute to you and Alan Turing, that I'd like you to approve when it's done just to make sure you like it and think it's okay. The worst thing ever would be a tribute that you're not into. The second piece is a kind of matrix-style love story between man, neoprene and their speculative offspring.

    Let me know if this is something you'd be interested in contributing to as well, if you're not too busy and into the theme – or if someone else's work immediately pops into your head. : )

    Btw I'm putting Flamingos on my to read list.
    It does sound great.


  5. Thanks Dennis, I’ll try to find Death of Louis XIV. I’ll get into today’s post later this evening, looks promising. And sorry to hear about your various misfortunes yesterday. Hope today goes better.


  6. Also, my friend Matt’s record label in Japan (Disktopia)is giving away a free/pay what you will compilation this month. The stuff he does and puts out is pretty great and not at all easy to classify and they were profiled by Wire magazine not so long ago. Anyway Here’s the link for anyone into dispersive electronica: http://www.factmag.com/2016/12/06/disktopia-free-15-track-compilation-seekersinternational-greeen-linez/

  7. Congratulations on the new novel, Grant! Very intrigued by the “related imagery” collection, hmm.

    Sorry about the radio silence, Dennis. Things are still nutty at work, but at least the end is near. (For a few weeks anyway.)

    Look forward to finding out which lucky buche will win it all. By then I’ll probably be in the mysterious orient for the holidays. Great to get updates on Michael and Oscar, and Joakim!

    Things have been rather sombre around here in the independent arts scene, with the Ghostship fire and all. I did catch a little queer film screening, with a recent short by old pal Gary Gregerson, and the main event of Steven Arnold’s Luminous Procuress. Then it was a very nice concert by Berliners Michael Thieke and Biliana Voutchkova.


  8. It’s true that the desires of my editors shape a lot of the films I watch. Sometimes this manifests itself in odd ways; despite being a critic for Gay City News, I generally only see fairly well-known LGBT films because their other critic is completely fascinated by them and wants to write about almost nothing else for the paper. Also, there’s the simple fact that watching films for review and writing about them is time-consuming. A friend of mine goes to all the many small national-cinema festivals that run throughout the year in NYC, and as a result, his top 10 list consists mostly of films I’ve never heard of. (However, his #1 and #2 right now are THINGS TO COME & MANCHESTER BY THE SEA.) If I want to spend much time at such festivals, I need to write about them, as I do annually with the Film Society of Lincoln Center’s experimental documentary “Art of the Real” series.

  9. Thank you so much Dennis! I hope this finds you well! We’re traveling so I’m just stopping here for a minute but I wanted to thank you and everybody for checking out the book!


  10. Hi!

    Thank you for today’s book. Very exciting.

    That sounds just about perfect! I’m really curious which one will be the winner!
    Haha, a Goth dentist’s drill, well, yes, something like that! When I get it, I’ll send you some pictures. And then we’ll see how good I am at using it – I’ve only ever tattooed myself with the ‘stick and poke’ technique and I imagine a machine is a tad bit different. Quicker, for sure. You don’t have any tattoos? Do you like them at all?
    Oh shit, I’m sorry about your ear! Do you feel alright now?
    And I’m also sorry about the real estate agent. Sounds kind of like a jerk. I’d totally understand if you didn’t reschedule the meeting after that.
    Honestly, I know very little about Cy Twombly’s work. I’ve seen a few photos of his pictures and read an article about him once which used very big words and compared his works to ancient paintings and I couldn’t really see the resemblance.
    I had a really lazy day today. I watched this movie, Garden of the Night and finished another book, this time by a Hungarian writer. I really enjoyed it.
    How was your day? Could you work on the dance piece?

  11. Congratulations Grant.
    I trust you’re familiar with “Bugsy” — Warren Beatty’s film about Bugsy Siegel whose lady love Virginia Hill was dubbed “The Flamingo” — which is why Bugsy named the hotel he built to establish Las Vegas “The Flamingo.” Warren and Annette met on that film and got together as a result. They married and had four children, the first of whom is the first transgender Stephen Ira Beatty.

  12. Hey Dendy Highwayman (maybe too much?)! That sounds like a nasty accident. How’s your ear?
    I like Newcastle, from what I can gather so far, but Jonathan, my boss/writing-partner, who’s lived there for a few years,hates it. Everyone I’ve met whilst there has seemed warm & the accent is a thing of sheer beauty.
    More writing today. Quite funny trying to write five minutes of animation that’s supposed to be funny & exciting, but has to also contain a certain preordained educational element. I think we’re getting there & thankfully we seem to work well together. Heading back to Glasgow as I type.
    What you got on for the rest of your week? Mine’s very work-y then it’s my Mum’s 70th birthday on Saturday. Aiee.
    Thanks for the tips on Neil Bartlett. I think I’ll buy one of those two.
    Hope your head’s healing & you’re feeling fine.
    Lots of love to you,

  13. Robbe-Grillet pal David Hamilton Tops Himself (Scandal follows)

  14. @ Grant, this is straightaway added to my Santa’s list.

    @ DC, ditto what TomK says re your Twombly review, it had me in gales of laughter. Art criticism misses you!

    The 2016 Turner Prize was won last night by Helen Marten, who makes complex installations that I’m very sympathetic to after viewing a few photos. It’s really her year what with a big Serpentine show and winning the Hepworth prize for sculpture. I’ll get chance to see the Hepworth show myself over Christmas while I’m down in Leeds.

  15. Well, now I’ve seen LIKE CATTLE TOWARDS GLOW. It reminded me of a modern view of hardcore ’70s European art cinema (Straub, Duras, Garrel, Akerman) with an up-to-the-minute use of music and technology. The dialogue has your stamp all over it, but I also liked that it was willing to go for long stretches with just silence or music. It’s too bad that it didn’t get a theatrical release anywhere in the world – there are many portions where I felt it would have much more impact on a big screen instead of my laptop. It could easily have become just another late entry into the New French Extremity field, but it’s something really special. Unfortunately, I fear your mix of hardcore gay sex and austere artiness equals commercial suicide: anyone looking for cheap thrills would probably get bored, while the homophobes among the arthouse crowd will be pissed off. BTW, I did vote for it among the year’s best undistributed films in the Indiewire survey today.

  16. hey,

    oh, sorry, they didnt even exist back then. sorry. got confused. u know how stupid i am.

    “I have no idea how many of the slave profiles are sincere, legit, etc.” no, i know very well uve no idea; i just asked 4 ur opinion on what percentage you thought could b legitimate/sincere/real/whatever.

    well, no, im not wealthy at all, i havent got a single cent 2 my name; id of course b traveling with someone else paying for the trip. but, anyway, it really wouldnt b that expensive. not even plane tickets to go from my city to paris & back r THAT expensive any+. also, the person whod pay 4 the trips traveling agents indeed very, very good at gettin the best possible prices. and “peripheral”???!!! really???!!! it wouldnt b “peripheral” AT ALL. at least not 2 me. i think ive made it + than clear just how very, extremely much u & ur work mean 2 me. idk, just call it confusion/bad signal reading/idiocy on my part or whatever; but i thought maybe u could b a little teeny tiny bit glad to finally know me. i know itd b a dream come true 4 me. way + than just that, actually. sorry. will leave u alone now.

  17. Here’s the “Bugsy” trailer You can see him building the “Flamingo” in parts of it.

  18. Grant, Big congrats. I likey. That’s a compliment of the highest order, btw.

    Dennis, Have you ever thought of writing about bunnies? Just bunnies, nothing else. Nothing radical or anything, just days and nights in the lives of bunnies. What a career turn there, no?

    But seriously, I’m trying to think of some artist/writer/musician/whatever who I love but then found out that that person likes something so mundane or boring or mainstream that it just fucking kills me. You have anyone like that? I just know there’s been someone before where I found out he liked, say, Big Macs or something, and I was just like, “NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!”

    So funny to see a pic of John Waters in there today. We just saw him on TV. He’s gonna be on some show. I hear my mother say, “John Waters has cancer.” I’m like, “WHAT?” She goes, “I said he looks like he has cancer.” I go, “He’s been really skinny all his life.” “Oh.”

    LPS has been very sick. He missed Monday through Wednesday of school last week with a sinus infection, then came home Friday night with a 103.4 fever. Went to the doc again Monday and had lost 9 pounds in 4 days. The temp was gone, but he developed all these ulcers in his mouth from the high fever and couldn’t eat. His temp went back up to 101 today and the ulcers haven’t gotten any better. We’re trying to keep him hydrated -it’s difficult for him to even drink water- and my mom will probably take him back to the doc tomorrow if he isn’t better in the morning.

  19. Oh, and yeah, that pizza place. What in the fuck? Everybody knows Hiilz has been running her child sex ring out the back of Pizza Hut in Boise for decades. Duh.

  20. Grant – Congratulations! ‘Flamingos’ looks amazing and I’ve just added it to the holiday gift. Love the cover, too. Looking forward to reading it — and this is a really enticing and thoughtfully constructed celebration of the book.

    Dennis – Yesterday’s Philippe Cote day was a mind blower. Just now catching up with it. His films were completely new to me. Thanks for that.

    Heading off shortly to a local book club who’re discussing ‘Novi Sad.’ Should be an odd and interesting experience. They’re sort of arty types, so I’m told, though it’s hard to say how they’ll react to it.

    Been reading some Gerald Murnane recently – you familiar with him? Australian, published by Dalkey, Beckett-ish rep though not so austere but still this novel ‘The Plains’ is deeply weird and pretty wonderful so far.

    Hope you get a break soon on the apartment hunt and nail down a good place.

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