For twelve years, I reviewed movies with a passion. I loved film and believed that criticism mattered, and I never got tired of asking myself and everyone inside and outside the screening room the eternal critic’s question: “Did you like it?” I went to premieres and festivals, cheerleaded for one of the best films of the decade — P.T. Anderson’s There Will Be Blood — and caught abuse from fans, colleagues and one sore director for critical reviews they disagreed with.
And then one day, I simply couldn’t do it anymore.
From the introduction to Raves, coming this fall. Stay up to date by subscribing to the newsletter.
Kino has been selected by Design Observer as one of the winners of their annual Fifty Books / Fifty Covers awards, organized by Design Observer in association with AIGA and Designers & Books. Kino’s cover was designed by Jamie Keenan. Here’s the L.A. Times on 50 books/50 covers.
Just in time for its one-year anniversary, Anna March reviewed Kino for The Rumpus:
For that whole year, I’ve been watching Kino on the hectic movie screen in my mind. I imagine it will always flicker there, for this exquisitely constructed novel endures… Read it.
Read Anna’s review.
Jürgen shared his ten favorite iPad apps for writers in the Huffington Post, including Evernote, GoodReader, and StoryCubes.
To save you untold hours of procrastination, here’s my current setup of ten apps for writing, drafting, outlining, editing, and generating story ideas, divided into five essentials and five remarkable aids for inspiration and creativity.
Read the article.
We couldn’t be more excited: Berlin publisher Horlemann is going to release the German edition of Kino in the Spring of 2014. Jürgen will translate the book into his native language himself.
The Fall 2012 issue of Los Angeles Review featured a review of Kino by Joe Ponepinto:
The pleasure of reading the work of an author who is completely immersed in the time and place of his fictional world is, unfortunately, rare. The chapters in Kino drawn from the title character’s journal are an example of writing that thrills not only by subject and characterization, but also by its sheer passion… The forays into Kino’s world of the 1920s, and the repercussions of his art eighty-plus years later, make this debut novel a winner.
You can read the entire review by downloading this pdf file.
As a part of the F.W. Murnau Foundation’s new series “Film trifft Buch” (Movie Meets Book), I will read from Kino, followed by a conversation with me and Andrea Wink and a screening of Helmut Käutner’s 1945 film Under the Bridges, on February 1.
The F.W. Murnau Foundation, located in Wiesbaden, preserves and restores Germany’s film heritage, and I’m thrilled to be presenting Kino in their beautiful new theater, followed by one of my favorite German films.
For details, please see the Murnau Foundation’s site, a pdf of their program, or the event’s Facebook page.
“The Death Bird,” an excerpt from Kino, appeared in the Fall 2012 issue of BLIP Magazine (formerly Mississippi Review), alongside authors such as George Saunders, Marcy Dermansky, Angela Ball, Meg Pokrass, and Bobbie Ann Mason.
We arrived at Ufa-Palast am Zoo in a dreamy state to see Murnau’s vampire movie. How can I describe it to someone whose eyes have been sullied by decades of trivial images dancing by on TV screens? You’ll never understand the rapture, the horror, the euphoric bliss I felt at the sheer visual surprise. With each passing moment, with every new shot on the screen, waves of pleasure rolled through me.
Read “The Death Bird.”
Christopher Allen (Conversations with S. Teri O’Type) interviewed me for I Must Be Off! about being an expat, the speculative elements of Kino, white slavery, cyanide, and my time at Mississippi College. You can read the interview here.
Christopher also reviewed Kino for the Fictionaut blog. From the review:
Kino is, however, much more than an action-packed mystery page-turner. At its core, Kino is a complex family drama, a story of how the excesses—the sins?—of one generation poison those to come.
Read Christopher’s review.
Book: A Futurist’s Manifesto, a collection of essays about the state of publishing edited by Hugh McGuire and Brian O’Leary, is available today from O’Reilly. I contributed an essay on Fictionaut to the section on “Projects from the Bleeding Edge.” Other contributors include Jacob Lewis, Valla Vakili, Travis Alber, Aaron Miller, Kassia Krozser, and Brett Sandusky.
The “idea” of this book was to explore “the idea of a book.” We wanted to get away from the abstract or philosophical, and make a practical guide for the publishing world — for someone just starting a publishing enterprise today, for people in the business already, and for authors and self-publishers who want to think beyond “upload my book to Kindle.”
Book: A Futurist’s Manifesto is available in print from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and O’Reilly, as well as online for free in its entirety. You can find my essay here.