Sunday, September 10, 2006

A bad week for young Stephen

...losing the Toronto Book Award and getting remaindered at the biggest local chain. Poor Stephen Marche. The prestige of such a nomination is as good as nullified by the 'reduced to clear' phenomenon. It helps if a published writer is able to separate the idea of the book as a product of intellectual rigour from the idea of the book as a stylized marketable good. The biggest local chain better have enough courtesy not to sell the Toronto Book Award finalist's work at a reduced price at Word on the Street, which will have a reading stage set up at the event, presumably with a table selling all the finalists' offerings. Somehow, I have a feeling that the biggest local chain would not have any hesitation about selling Marche's book for just $4.99, a little way down the street, with only a hot dog cart and a lemonade stand to keep young Stephen from seeing the big red sticker on the cover of a pile of his books. Alas, I am sure he already knows.

Music: past/present/future

Blast from the past: Collapsing New People by Fad Gadget (most recently heard on David Marsden's show on Pulver Radio)

Best current feel-good indie pop song: Publish My Love by Rogue Wave

Best current ode to urbanism: City I Love You by Bravo Silva

Best contemporary classical offering: Affairs of the Heart by Marjan Mozetich

Most anticipated albums of the fall: The Information (hmmm...that sounds familiar...) by Beck & I Am Not Afraid of You And I Will Beat Your Ass (also qualifies for best album title) by Yo La Tengo

Danielewski redux

Having now seen Only Revolutions in the flesh, I am certain that this is either the most experimental work of fiction ever, or the most gimmicky. I didn't really get it. Perhaps my sense of the literary avant garde is somewhat compromised, but it's just comes off as so much shiny, pretty nonsense. But then again, I am just a common philistine.

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