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Thursday 11/19/20

Heat is on. Wrote another op-ed--this one would be for New Year's Eve. It's on stair running. Damn good. Powerful. I need to clean it up. Will do later.

People are quite presumptuous. I don't have a lot of patience for it, in part because I'm asked so often what kind of writer I am, which is a very narrow-minded question. People will be annoyed if you can't answer them in the two or three words they want/expect. I say it's complicated, but it's pretty rangy, and that annoys them, like I'm lying or this is me prevaricating because I'm some pretend writer. Which sounds like it'd be fun for me, doesn't it?

I was at the Golden Goose late this afternoon. It's a market near me. I went there to get cucumbers and kale. There was a guy with two little kids. I get that little kids will stand in the middle of aisles and what not, and that's just how it is. Not their fault. But when the parent observes this, and sees that you can't get by, and they're just chit-chatting away on their phone, I'm not a fan. Kept happening with this dude all over the store. I keep standing aside, waiting until there's enough room to pass, when he says to me, "Are you open?" I know exactly what this is about. I have a New England Aquarium fleece. I'm an Aquarium member. I don't have any fancy clothes--I don't have need for them right now, and will get some when I do--and I tend to wear things like sweatshirts or a fleece from the institutions I support, where I spend time, that mean something to me. So I have a BSO sweatshirt, for instance, but no one asks me if I'm conducing the Berlioz program. I say to the guy, "Am I open?" He goes, "yeah, the Aquarium." Because there's no way someone could just have a different kind of interest than this guy. Like what? If I had a Patriots sweatshirt on--which I do often enough--are we asking me what the game plan is for Sunday? Am I on the active roster? I simply say, "It's just a jacket, man." I do not like shit like that. I do not like presumption. I also don't like entitlement like "I'll take up as much damn space in this store as I please." They go hand in hand.

One of the people nice enough to write a letter of recommendation for me with this Guggenheim thing asked for a run down of my book projects, so I sent this email along. I'm going to put up a stand-alone entry on there that clarifies what's happening with completed books and books about to be completed, and coming out, very soon. Because this is fractional. It'll do me good just to have it all in one well-lit place, as they say.

Meatheads Say the Realest Things: A Satirical (Short) Novel of the Last Bro just came out.

Next year will see the publication of these books:

33 1/3 series volume from Bloomsbury on Sam Cooke's Live at the Harlem Square Club, 1963

A story collection from Dzanc called If You [ ]: Fantasy, Fabula, F**kery, Hope

A film book from Auteur called Scrooge (which is about the 1951 film of the same name).

After that there will be a novel from Blank Page called Musings with Franklin: A Novel in Conversation that You Can Drink To.

I'm finishing a book right now called Longer on the Inside: Very Short Fictions of Infinitely Human Lives.

The project I told the Guggenheim people I would be working on with the money is a novel called Done Eden.

And these are not official yet, but they are likely--a book with University of Illinois Press on Billie Holiday, a book on the British version of The Office for Wayne State. There is also a completed story collection called Cheer Pack: Stories, that features stories from the VQR, Glimmer Train, Commentary, Harper's, and which could be easier to sell with said Guggenheim.

Going back to June 2018, I have written over 200 short stories. A number of them are for Longer on the Inside. Many others are longer and will be divvied up over other future books.

There is a lot more (Beatles book, a novel about a piano prodigy called The Freeze Tag Sessions, a collection of my jazz writings, a completed essay collection called Glue God: Essays (and Tips) for Repairing a Broken Self ), but that's probably plenty.


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