Saturday, November 29, 2008

Why N+1?

Why have I been attacking the jet-set lit journal N+1?

Last year the Guardian (UK) named the ULA and the N+1 gang as the only rivals to McSweeney's as major literary movements on this side of the Atlantic. The literary rebellion is in competition with these people.

The battle is a battle of art but also of ideas-- especially as N+1 portrays itself as a collection of intellectuals. The question is: which cause is the more attractive option for the future of our literature? Which carries the stronger magic?

N+1 is little different from McSweeney's-- just another branch on the establishment tree. They're not thinkers, but regurgitators: "retailer of second-hand opinions," or well-credentialed mediocrities.

Someday N+1's editors will realize we won't be living at the poles North and South in twenty years, that they've been putting into their stuffy pub cockeyed nonsense. They'll look in the mirror and exclaim, "We're idiots!"

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