I Can Give You Anything But Love

indiana-garyGary Indiana had an unusual career, as a writer, filmmaker, visual artist, actor and playwright. He briefly studied at UC Berkeley but dropped out to help a friend make pornographic films. After soaking up the sunshine noir and punk scene of 1970s Los Angeles, he moved to New York City and settled into a cheap East Village apartment — the same one he lives in today. Since 1987, Indiana has published novels, nonfiction, plays, short stories — all with an unmistakable, sardonic voice embedded in the text, and all experimenting with the traditions of form.

The title of his latest memoir, I Can Give You Anything but Love is “really about disconnection between sexual desire and love, in my life,” Indiana says. A graphic and funny memoir, it finds the author reinventing yet another genre — this time using his own personal narrative. He becomes the connective tissue that binds together a diaspora of subcultures: the beatnik-era experimental writing and happenings of downtown New York, the 1960s co-opted counterculture gone awry, the punk movement that followed, and the art and intellectual circles of the Reagan ’80s, when the AIDs crisis was wiping out a generation of young gay men like him.

(revised from the introduction to an interview with Indiana by J.C. Gabel in the L. A. Times.)

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I Want Everything

Kathy Acker (née Karen Lehmann; April 18, 1947 – November 30, 1997)
was an American experimental novelist, punk poet, playwright,
essayist, postmodernist and sex-positive feminist writer. She was
strongly influenced by the Black Mountain School, William S.
Burroughs, David Antin, French critical theory, philosophy and
pornography.

AckerI went back and reviewed my previous entries on Kathy Acker in this weblog and surprisingly, most of my writing on the subject must have been lost in an earlier edition of my opinionated rants (probably in the bit bucket at Apple). So here is a quick introduction to Acker and her art. The quotation above is from Wikipedia (you might want to go there for a deeper discussion of the author).

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The Return of Kathy Acker

AckerWith an announcement like that, who could resist. Truthfully (and ecstatically) I assumed the return of Kathy Acker meant that a publisher was reissuing all the fantastic texts Acker published, from her days in the sex trade until her untimely death by evil cancer.  Actually, this was an announcement of a new Kathy Acker book being published containing the revealing and unique correspondence between Acker and her close lover/friend/confidant/colleague McKenzie Wark.

Caroline Kellog’s short piece in the L. A. Times leads us to the announcement of the book of correspondence published by MIT Press.

Kathy Acker Returns

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I Hunt Killers

killerIt’s a common narrative: the highly successful father teaches his son the skills and techniques used to become the future scion of the family business. Now, as the novel opens, the young man is still in High School, has a hemophilic friend, a black girlfriend, and is concerned that he too will follow his father who is currently in prison for having killed 124 people … Dad was one of the most notorious serial killers in history: a Super-Serial Killer.

Barry Lyga writes what is known as Young Adult fiction. Steeped in the world of comic books, Lyga has transferred the elements of plotting and characterization from the graphic world to his short stories and novels. His prose is not complex but as evidenced by his novel I Hunt Killers, his themes are not for children.

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