The most important moves in the ULA right now are happening behind the scenes. A few more important pieces in the ULA machine will soon be put into place.
One thing we need to do is bring other ULA personalities besides myself to the forefront. If projects underway by Tim Hall, Patrick Simonelli, J.D. Finch, Jeff Potter, and others work out we'll be on the way to doing this.
Come Spring we'll make more noise about Tim Hall's novel Half-Empty, in conjunction with broader ULA activities. Tim may even have another book planned, of mysterious subject (I hope he keeps mum about it), whose working title is "Our Bad Writers"-- whatever that means.
Yesterday I met Philadelphia's best and most overlooked novelist, Lawrence Richette, and discussed lit matters with him. (I've read his first two Xlibris books, available on Amazon. I highly recommend them. He's a traditional novelist-- no hyper James Nowlan!-- but always provides a great read, which ultimately is what literature is about.) No other Philly novelist touches Richette-- few do in the country. He has a far more focused and bullshit-free vision than your typical McSweeney's writer!
Richette handed me his newest book, The Abyss. We discussed ways I can help get out "the word" about it. This post is a start.
What is all this blathering from me about?
When I was very young on a chaotic job I had a frazzle-haired boss named Mitch. Mitch didn't seem to know more than anyone else how the system we were in operated-- he provided hokey maxims in response to our questions. I was a perpetual smartass who was always asking questions. "Why are we doing it this way?" I'd ask. "Why are we doing this at all?"
Mitch would stare at me, exasperated and puzzled, in his world-weary way, put his hands through his frazzled hair, and tell me, "Karl, just do it for the judge."
(What Mitch said didn't make much sense, and didn't have to make sense. His job was to get us into harmony with an illogical unknowable process.)
Another slogan of Mitch's was, "When the word comes down, get on the train."
I'm telling ULAers near and far that the ULA train is leaving the station. We're going to have an exciting year. No reserved tickets-- first come, first served. If you're not on the train when it pulls out you'll be left behind.
p.s. I hope to get the first part of my report on the other Harper's plagiarism matter up either tomorrow or Friday, so stay tuned to this spot on your lit-blog dial.