Monday, February 25, 2008

Who Wants Change?

THE QUESTION becomes: Who wants to change literature? Who believes that American literature today is corrupt and decrepit? Who understands that the public face of the novel, dinosaurs like Philip Roth and John Updike, would be Grade B level in a better time, or that mainstream poetry is in such sad shape it has no public face-- unless one counts John Ashbery and his inert New Yorker scribblings?

Who wants change?

13 comments:

jimmy grace said...

It's telling that you frame this question in the language used by our two corporate political parties.

Every work of art changes somebody. You want to smash the system and then rise up with your favorite artists. But real revolution, real CHANGE, comes from art itself. And you can't even get your artists to appreciate each other, let alone bring their art to the world.

You think everybody disagrees with you because they're threatened of your ideas, but real artists would rather make art than talk about how they're going to do it someday, here it comes, almost there, almost there...

King said...

Total bullshit, per usual, "Grace."
Art changes nobody if nobody knows about it.
There are some great underground writers out there like Bill Blackolive and Fred Woodworth whose art is changing their small circle of readers. (I've been one of them.) When they pass on, their art and their ideas will likely die with them.
There comes a time to bring new art and new ideas to the public at large, which is what I've been doing. I haven't discovered a better way, so far.
Yes, this world, this system of literature, is extremely unfair. Great writers ARE being shut out.
I've been reading a book about boxer Archie Moore, who was shut out of a title shot for many many years.
Should he have accepted it, and been the best in obscurity, unknown?
He never stopped pushing for his shot; never ceased making noise about what was going on.
Every one of your posts, "Grace," exhibits a naive view about how this world operates.
There are tremendous underground talents out there right now-- far better than the Jonathan Foers and John Ashberys of the established literary order.
I say to them:
Nobody is going to hand us anything.
We have to take it.

jimmy grace said...

"Art changes nobody if nobody knows about it."

"There are some great underground writers out there like Bill Blackolive and Fred Woodworth whose art is changing their small circle of readers. (I've been one of them.) "

Even you don't usually contradict yourself so quickly.

And remind me again why you don't push the artists you believe in on this blog, where they might inspire other writers, instead of, for example, mocking some rich chick.

FDW said...

Dimmy Grease:
"There you go again"
No one no where wth as much sustained effort has promoted, "discovered" advised and then t every opportunity especially those opportunities of his own in print and in electronic media including radi, underground independent writers as KING has and continues to do.
If you wnat to get into a battle over the souls of the younger generation of up and coming writers you've already lost so take yr gaga googoo and head back to the daycare center.
Also you shld. take that thing out of your mouth if you want anybody to understand what yr.bering about.

jimmy grace said...

Frankie baby, you want a blowjob just ask for one. Don't ask me, but if you admit your own desires you'll find some sucker. In the meantime ask the Beatles what happens when you go around carrying pictures of Chairman Mao..

FDW said...

The wd. is sucka! Fool.
And John Lenin lives!
Point is:
Abhutavadi Nirayam!

King said...

The bottom line, "Grace," is that you ask us, underground writers, to remain in an obscure corner.
Do you ask the same of the privileged?
I HAVE been promoting writers like Blackolive. In 2001 he was the headliner at a big underground reading I staged at the Amato Opera House in New York City-- an event which obtained us press in several big circulation publications.
I actually invested every penny I had, and a tremendous amount of sweat and energy, to promote writers like Bill.
Sure, writers like Bill, Frank, others, have influenced my writing and my ideas. That will impact the culture-at-large ONLY if I have some standing myself. Do I? If not, then your argument is meaningless.
My goal IS to get the word out about such writers; about the underground lit movement in general-- and this is exactly what you oppose; what drives you to post here.
The contradiction then is on your side.
How exactly do underground writers "bring their art to the world" is a System which does not allow our kind of writer to speak?
You're the perfect reactionary, "Grace." Likely a monied author yourself, trying to keep down writers who are already at the bottom.
You fear something about us, about this blog, or you wouldn't be here.

jimmy grace said...

I've never asked you to do anything, except maybe apologize for posting publicly that I'm Steven Elliott. I've just mocked you and argued with you. If you think that everybody who mocks and argues with people on the web is really frightened of their objects, then you have a lot to learn about being bored at work with internet access.

Anyone searching for "blackolive" or "moody" on this blog can see where you stand on the promotion of artists vs. the attacking of rich kids. You can attack them all you want but I don't think it's going to bring your writers any access at all. You've been doing this for how many years? And what little press you've gotten is all about...YOU. Almost like you're an egotist instead of an activist.

King said...

Bill Blackolive was featured prominently in several articles I obtained for the ULA-- including the 2001 Shout New York piece (which included a photo of Bill) and the Glasgow Herald article from, I believe, 2003. This is a guy who'd never before received any attention-- despite being one of the great underground writers for a couple decades.
Bill also headlined the ULA's Detroit show-- I picked up both his air fare and his hotel bill to get him to the thing.
Sure, I received much of the attention with our articles-- mainly because I was always the person most available. (I had great trouble getting ULAers on short notice for the BlackBook article, for instance.) Etc etc etc. I have nothing to answer for on that score-- I've promoted numerous shows and never once made myself the headliner-- though I had the biggest name in the outfit. Often I left myself off the promo material. I also never pushed to have the ULA do a book of mine. I'm not quite the egomaniac some people have made me out to be. But maybe it's time I started living up to that reputation, for all I've gotten otherwise.
Your role here, "Grace"-- and you may well be Mr. Elliott-- is to be an apologist for the likes of Mr. Moody.
The fact is that he may be the most corrupt person in the lit scene, and so well deserved any attention I got about him.
Understand this fact (and I know you do): writers like myself, Bill Blackolive, the rest of us, have been TOTALLY shut out by the mainstream, including mainstream media. You ask us to sit quietly? The attention we DID receive-- quite substantial actually-- was obtained ONLY as a result of the ULA's exposes of corrupt characters like Moody, Franzen, and the like. That was our wedge through the door-- and it was completely justified, given the nature of the world we're dealing with it.
Our mistake was in not pushing the campaign hard ENOUGH.
The Rebellion isn't over by any means. . . .

jimmy grace said...

So you've basically given Rick Moody more publicity? Great going.

You're right about one thing - rebellion's never over. But it does leave whiners in the dust...

King said...

Moody's corruption should've received a lot MORE publicity. . . .

jimmy grace said...

and that would have helped art how?

King said...

??!!! By helping to eliminate the intrinsic corruption which exists in today's literary world-- freeing up the system for America's most authentic and original voices, like a Bill Blackolive.
Haven't the trust funders received enough attention and space already?
You are certainly extremely dense.
How many questions are you addressing to the Overdogs of literature?