Tuesday, January 3, 2012

I'll Be Reading On The Thirteenth

Yes, Joe, I am jealous as fuck every time you blog about your fucking home gym. I used to be a monster, goddamnit! Now I'm a brain in a fucking bucket.

The time has come once again. Hey, everybody! At 7:30 on January 13, I'll be reading at Pegasus Books at 2349 Shattuck in Berkeley for Lip Service West, the series of edgy readings run by Joe Clifford.

Edgy. Heh-heh. Edgy is not the word for my piece. It is probably the single harshest, most emotionally brutal work I've ever done, and are you at all familiar with my range? It would be easy to point at subject matter like suicide, gore, and necrophilia as the reason this is such an ugly experience, but I like to think that those elements are finally subsumed in larger, more disturbing questions of morality, identity, and obsession. I'm proud of it, I will stand by it, I am not ashamed of what it portrays even if I am disturbed by myself.

But this one is a serious motherfucker. It hurt me to write it. I had to dig deep into things I'd really rather have left forgotten or unthought. There are laughs. There are even a couple of funny laughs.

But there are reasons people tend to describe my work as if it were violent crime rather than art. You want to know the truth? I think the main reason Joe Clifford is using this? I suspect a certain clinical interest. I think he wants to see what it does to an audience. For scientific purposes.

So come on down on the thirteenth, and be part of science!


Joe Clifford said...

Fuck yeah, I do. Who wouldn't? If my series is about "edgy," it don't get much edgier. That said, I wouldn't repeatedly have you read if I didn't think you were an amazing, ballsy, daring writer, all attributes I aspire to comprise. So, yes, there is a train-wreck level of intrigue, because few would attempt this sort of a piece. But there are equal parts respect and admiration. Don't forget that part.

(PS, you are more than welcome to use my home gym any time you'd like...)

Rob Pierce - 2 Verbs said...

Is it a love story?

Neil Vogler said...

Any chance of this being recorded and then put up on your blog? Some of us aren't able to travel the thousands of miles due to pesky budget restrictions.

Sean Craven said...

Joe, it's kind words like yours that make it worth chewing through the restraints in the morning. You know what's going to make this one extra-awful? I'm going to go smooth, so that people have to think about it for a while afterward before the full horror falls on them.

I really appreciate the gym offer; I'm missing a couple of discs, so I've been trying to figure out some kind of workable athletic activity. The studies linking muscle growth with neuroplasticity make me extra jealous. A dangerous mind in an intimidating body, as they used to say.

Yes, Rob, it is indeed Splatter Love. Here's what Rob's referring to --


And Neil! These are being recorded, but since the videos are processed and uploaded by a volunteer, they're a long, long way behind schedule.

That said, I have a friend with a video camera, and we've started talking about putting some of my performance work up on YouTube. I will keep you informed.

Joe Clifford said...

I think that is a wise call, playing it straight. I used to have a friend who said the reason Dave Gilmour's vox were so affecting was because he put zero emotion into it, letting the song's power shine on (pardon the pun), and I think that is true here. Unlike your first piece with us ("this job has to be done!"), there is so much brewing beneath the surface that you run the risk of overpowering with a bombastic performance. I was going to suggest the same restraint. I'm glad we agree...

Sean Craven said...

The effect I'm going to go for? Seductive, as long as you don't listen to a damned thing I say.