Delighted to share Brendan Lorber’s interview with me in Maudlin House about my tenure editing and publishing Big Other.
Lorber: What is good writing?
Madera: What we talk about when we’re talking about literary writing, though, is love, that is, the art of writing is an eros of writing. And by “eros,” I mean, not only life-affirming and revivifying but life itself. Also, how long would you endure a lover who always said not only the expected, but the hackneyed, whose utterances were full of overused words, phrases, and sentences, a lover whose gestures were rehearsed and mechanically performed? And yet, and yet, this is what we so often accept from artists, literary and otherwise. In other words, always refuse the thanatos of writing, of art, generally; and always pursue, affirm, and propagate the eros of art, literary and otherwise.
Delighted to have “When Seeing Isn’t Looking Isn’t Believing” published in The Tunnel at 25, a symposium engaging William H. Gass’s The Tunnel on the occasion of the twenty-fifth anniversary of its publication. It features work by Joy Williams, David Auerbach, Steven G. Kellman, and others.
My contribution is a fiction told from the perspective of Martha Kohler, the novel’s anti-hero’s wife, who apostrophizes her late husband from the hospital bed where she fights for her life against a certain virus coursing through her.
Thanks, Ted Morrissey for the invitation and publication!
Happy to share that great writer and critic Tony Trigilio‘s conversation with me about the ten years I’ve spent editing and publishing Big Other has been published in Volume 1 Brooklyn!
Here’s an excerpt:
[I]f there’s any trend, that is, direction to the work I’ve published, it’s contained, perhaps, in something John Coltrane purportedly said: “I start in the middle of a sentence and move both directions at once.” What Coltrane is suggesting here is a kind of “thereness” that isn’t merely the in medias res zone it seems to suggest, but an impossibility space, an always-in-flux place allowing for impossible movement. What it also suggests, maybe even simultaneously, is a possibility space of interruption that’s really a collaboration, that is, a sentence is being or has been uttered and you can insert an utterance within that sentence, the sounds of which are then pushed in both directions toward a beginning and an end, which might themselves be never-ending multiplicities. As for my vision for Big Other, I hope that, through word of mouth, these art objects “especially worthy of love” (as William H. Gass calls them), these gifts, really, will continually find their proper recipients.
Thanks, Tony, for the engaging conversation! And thanks Tobias Carroll for publishing it!
The anger I’m feeling living through these catastrophic times is palpable but not consuming. The sadness I’ve felt has been enormous but not overwhelming. As New York prematurely “reopens,” I’m spending part of this morning reflecting about what happened over the past few months. While there has been and continues to be many things to be angry and sad about, to rebel against, etc., there are also many things to celebrate, praise, express gratitude for. To wit, all of the following happened during the lockdown, uprising, etc.: