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“We would be worse than we are without the good books we have read, more conformist, not as restless, more submissive, and the critical spirit, the engine of progress, would not even exist. Like writing, reading is a protest against the insufficiencies of life. When we look in fiction for what is missing in life, we are saying, with no need to say it or even to know it, that life as it is does not satisfy our thirst for the absolute – the foundation of the human condition – and should be better. We invent fictions in order to live somehow the many lives we would like to lead when we barely have one at our disposal.”—Mario Vargas Llosa
“A novel should be an experience and convey an emotional truth rather than arguments.” ”—Joyce Cary
“I want to read only what I’ll want to reread—the definition of a book worth reading once.” ”—Susan Sontag
“We are all our own graveyards, I believe; we squat amongst the tombs of the people we were. If we're healthy, every day is a celebration, a Day of the Dead, in which we give thanks for the lives that we lived, and if we are neurotic we brood and mourn and wish that the past was still present.”—Clive Barker
“A lot of people proclaim a need for independence, for space. And while I could attest to that, more than anything, I was a tiger dying amongst the sprawling jungle. I longed for a cage of my own. My apartment, a two bedroom overlooking the gentrification of Philadelphia, had a décor of my design. I picked out the furniture, including the Ikea futon I dubbed “death trap,” and gave every trinket and knick-knack their designated spots: high school diploma and Bachelor’s degree over my black computer desk, novelty shot-glasses along the top of my bookcase and various Buddha figurines, from flea markets in South Jersey, on my dresser and nightstands. And of course, my vinyl collection, a two hundred piece of my heart that took me to the dustiest, most allergenic music stores on the East Coast.”—Longform Fiction is featuring my short story (and first ever publication) “Saturn Return,” originally published in 2008 by Up The Staircase.
“I will tell you something in that area, if you like a theory, which I may have come up with after I wrote the book—I’m not sure. It is the notion that the reader is brought in almost as a collaborator in creating the picture that emerges of the characters, of the situation, of what they look like—everything. So this authorial absence, which everyone from Flaubert to Barthes talks about, is the sense that the book is a collaboration between the reader and what is on the pages.”—William Gaddis
somebody once described to me
a fiction where eyes contain galaxies
and it’s the stars that make them sparkle
when a smile dances across their mouth..
but in disbelief, I wavered
for the city lights always drowned out the stars
but your gaze caresses me
like I’m of the finest silks
and in that is a fiction itself..
all my doubts were smoothed over
as my chin was tilted upward,
and there before me were the galaxies
captured within your eyes.