Tastemaker Blogs 07/01/21

Getting some good downloads on that episode of the podcast I did with Ben yesterday. Talking to him was really refreshing, and made me want to get back into the indie publishing world, not to actually publish, but just to be in the mix. I missed having opinions about new books, interacting with cool people who I like, and just generally being in the mix.

I think I’ll always get along with the transgressive weirdos more than the establishment people. It’s always been that way. I was in the Bizarro community, and those are all transgressive weirdos. It’s just that once I got more into the crime world, I met more comfortable day job climbers, people who mix “rhetorical radicalism with careerist professionalism,” to quote Geoff Schullenberger on the latest episode of System of Systems. That world is a total office space, or maybe high school, and the indie world seems much more mean, dark, but genuine.

Speaking of which, Kelby got in a little trouble on Twitter the other day for suggesting that Dennis Cooper might not actually read all the books he puts on his best-of lists, which is a pretty innocuous statement and has been true of almost every literary “tastemaker” I’ve ever known, including many of my friends. But this made people mad for some reason, probably because Cooper is a great writer (The Sluts is one of my top-5 books) and he puts a lot of time and effort into maintaining that blog, which brings attention to indie people who otherwise wouldn’t get it. Does he read all the books? I don’t know, and I don’t care, although I’d guess he probably does, because he’s not on Twitter. Still, I don’t know why the response to Kelby’s tweet wasn’t just “haha, I don’t know, maybe,” after which everyone kept it moving. But I do know the answer…it’s because people are silly!

Although this is a good opportunity to recommend Cooper’s blog, which if you haven’t read it, is this massive infodump of whatever he’s interested in at the time, including some indie gems. I visit it about once or twice a week to scroll through. Everything on there isn’t necessarily “for me,” but who gives a shit? Everything doesn’t have to be “for me.” The blog is a treasure, DC is a treasure, and so is Kelby.

People are funny.

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