My friend Meg, who is amazing, wrote this about chosen childlessness and mental illness. Thirteen Times: An Essay
After The Skating Rink I didn’t understand what the big deal was about Bolaño (but I also bought it because it was about a figure skater, like I was going to read a sexy, literary version of The Cutting Edge, so I was setting myself up for disappointment from the start). I was so wrong & Natasha Wimmer must be the best translator in the world. That language is beautiful.
When you do things to your house everything takes ten times longer because you find things like a huge metal beam you have to cut before you can install the range hood or a wall you have to open or that Ikea changed the drawer rails two years ago and the new soft-close mechanism doesn’t fit on it and then you go get the old mechanism and realize they changed it because it sucks and then you...
When I lived in Canada the first time, when I was twenty-two, I read a lot of true crime, which is not something you read for the writing unless you’re reading like In Cold Blood and true crime kind of peaked with In Cold Blood. It’s a genre that barely exists in trade paperback. You read it because you are curious about horrible things. That kind of awful curiosity, even about...
But, oh my god, I might have to get TV for this: Portlandia, starring my imaginary girlfriend, Carrie Brownstein.
This is my favourite book there ever was. Years after I first read it I think about it almost every day. This and Try. There is nothing better, no film or photograph or drawing or letter, hardly even most feelings. I’ve been on medical leave from work, that’s why.
My favourite Brian Evenson book is The Open Curtain, but this is the creepiest. And I didn’t know I liked detective stories until Motherless Brooklyn, but I love them.
Q. What books did you order? A. One about a woman kept prisoner by her father and one about a man’s downward spiral as a crack addict and one about ‘a murder inside a secret society of fundamentalist self-mutilators’ and a French gay sex book.
The novella in here, Sukkwan Island, is one of the most incredible things I have ever read. I could read it forever.
I wanted something else, like different language, like a little less silly mid-life infidelity with 23-year-old women, something harder, but the ending, the last ten pages, they were so good, like the saddest knowing. A perfectly closed book. I can’t think of a better one.
I have no patience for people who have very recently been diagnosed with mental illness, have one breakdown and then, once miraculously recovered, go on some rampage of hope, proselytizing and ‘education’. Especially when those people are young, white, privileged men. Fuck off. Meanwhile, women who speak about mental illness - most notably Elizabeth Wurtzel, to people who grew up in...
Jon McGregor's top 10 dead bodies in literature →
proustitute: From Dante to Raymond Carver, the novelist selects stories of lost lives that coalesce around a “central absence.” Look!
Old sink. Ew. New sink. I want to mount a little video monitor next to the sink showing just how much work this involved so people will appreciate it, but no one will understand. See the rerouting of the plumbing at least? Next we will do underfloor heating and re-tiling. Or at least mount faceplates and remove errant screws.
Everyone is quitting drinking and smoking, but it is winter, what are we supposed to do??
becomingmichaeldbrown: Some Ways to Disappear - Volume I, Issue II, Winter 2010 A5, soft cover, perfect bound, full colour litho printing, 52 pages, two page throwout. Limited edition of 250, with the first 100 copies hand numbered. Special Edition of 10 copies. Each come with a signed and numbered, 8x10” C-Print by Charlie Engman. Click here to see the print More information and sample...
This is my almost brother-in-law, Brad, and me. Pretending to do an ad for our matching Christmas drills. It is my favourite photograph right now. Brad is a former model, as you can see, and he is marrying my sister in Oahu next December.
We’re removing a kitchen counter that I hate that separates the living room from the kitchen. It’s scary to see the inside of your house, like its skeleton, when you cut open walls. I also worry that my cats will run inside and disappear.
Grant application, writing, cutting a hole in my wall to mount a sink, next weekend I am scraping the popcorn off my ceilings.
Toronto things: - The King streetcar running through Roncesvalles again has improved my life at least 137%. I no longer have to go to second base with half the subway riders in the city every morning. Goodbye, lovers. - Current Toronto-based HGTV shows are a great source of comfort, seeing other people go through the agony of multiple bids, have heart attacks, cry their eyes out and pay 5 or...
Article on David Vann in The Guardian. Also, look, you can download the shortlisted BBC National Short Story Awards stories, one of which is by Jon McGregor, who is awesome. Also, Gaspar Noe’s Enter the Void is playing at the Lightbox and I want to quit my job and go see it right now.
Do you have any idea how much of my life has been spent on this faucet decision, mostly made in sentimental remembrance of my best friend’s giant Swedish farmhouse when I was a teenager, yellow wooden planks outside with white trim, Porsches parked on the gravel driveway, Alessi teapots in the kitchen, bathrooms plastered with marble from Italy, the television room full of Le Corbusier...
Watch this: Every Fucking Day of My Life
Does this faucet look like those “smoking leads to erectile dysfunction” warnings with the flaccid cigarette made of ash on Canadian cigarette packs? Will I think of it every time?
Waking up in a glitter dress after the sun has set, black smudges pressed onto your face from last night’s hand stamp, the insides of your cheeks bitten raw, again and again and again and again.