guillaume morissette



1) The YOLO Pages
2) The Fun We’ve Had by Michael J Seidlinger
3) Left Hand by Paul Curran
4) Black Cloud by Juliet Escoria
5) Walls by Andrew Duncan Worthington
6) Tampa by Alissa Nutting
7) New Tab by Guillaume Morissette
8) Thunderbird by Dorothea Lasky
9) You Can Make Anything Sad by Spencer Madsen
10) The Collected Works of Noah Cicero Vol 2


have u seen my whale day

the whale is back !!

issue #6 is here !! :

husmw is one of my fav lit journals, I like what they’re about in a lot of different ways

selections from all 6 issues, featuring stories and poems by:

Crispin Best
Sarah Jean Alexander
Guillaume Morissette
Jackson Nieuwland
Natalie Chin
Socrates Adams
Michael Hessel-Mial
Paige Gresty
Russ Woods
Dave Shaw
Justin Carter
Angela Shier
Marcus Slease



a kouple of #klassic book kovers I love

1. Orange Juice by Timothy Willis Sanders
2. Stories // Stories 2 by Scott McClanahan
3. CRUNK JUICE by Steve Roggenbuck
4. selected unpublished blog posts of a mexican panda express employee by Megan Boyle
5. Kadian by Jordan Castro
6. There Is No Reason For Tigers To Be Beautiful They Just Are by Heiko Julien
7. Illuminati Girl Gang Vol 1
8. Moods by Rachel B Glaser
9. i am my own betrayal by Guillaume Morissette

Romantically, I still felt like a five-year-old, one that confused fantasy with reality, was afraid of darkness, loud noises. I had spent my high school years being awkward and not handsome and thinking that love and sex and relationships would happen to me eventually, that all I had to do was to avoid thinking about it too much and just wait. Since then, I had had girlfriends and ambiguous relationships and other things, but those had weirdly bounced off of me like a kind of minor deflection. It seemed like I was still waiting and would continue waiting, quietly waiting, like I was in love with the waiting and would miss the waiting if I were to get into a relationship I felt anything other than indifference towards.
—  Guillaume Morissette New Tab

name: Guillaume Morissette

age: ugh

occupation: writer, also unemployed/creative writing major, ugh

1. what is your present state of mind?

2. where were you born? 

3. where do you live now? 

montreal, canada

4. where would you like to live?

the city I built in sim city 2000 when I was a kid that occupied the entire map & it was the year 4000 & to install new bigger buildings I had to bulldoze small houses, but I would only move there if I was still allowed to be mayor.

5. do you think you’re interesting?

I think I am flawed but I mean well.

thinking about what other people think of me in more precise terms feels like an infinite abyss kind of thing, like a mirror facing another mirror.

6. how is your love life?

7. what were you like as a child?

clumsy/naïve. one time, I was 7, we went to the bathroom as a group and had to wait in line after and I was playing with my friend in the line and got excited and fell ass-first in the janitor’s mop bucket and all the other kids thought I had peed myself and pointed at me and laughed and made fun of me and emotionally I am not sure I’ve been the same since. 

8. what did you eat today?

tofu, rice, protein bar, multivitamin. my savings account looks like it’s on life support right now, so I have limited money for food, but I haven’t noticed a difference in my overall satisfaction level compared to when I could theoretically buy things. I don’t seem to care about food that much.

9. have you ever created culture or art?

I wrote a book and I make charts sometimes, but I dislike thinking of myself as an artist or poet or author because it makes me sound like I take myself seriously. thinking of myself as a person already seems like a lot and kind of exhausting.

10. do you like drinking alcohol or using drugs? 

one of the poems in my book is called, ‘I am on MDMA let me give you life advice.’

11. what kind of people do you hate? 


12. what are your goals, if you have any? 

write a novel, then give up. 

13. do you have any depressing stories about your life? 

haven’t talked to my parents in I think two years, feels like I am set on never going to back to my hometown, I have sad xmases but other than that, I see no downside to my decision.

14. who are your favorite authors?

whoever wrote, ‘the history of celibacy,’ bill bissett, lidia yuknavitch, other ppl. 

15. what will you be doing ten years from now?

legally married to my facebook account, lying to myself re: being old, not understanding the internet or anything anymore, writing ‘the history of celibacy 2’ and then reading from it at some sort of alt lit reunion tour.

Alt Lit Crushes: Jan 2013

alt lit crushing 

here are the coverboys of the month

guillaume morissette and theo thimo

together in photogenic bliss

if u were my wingman would u take the one on the left or on the right?

do you like the affectless but poetic trauma of gm or the bleepity bloop DOS-lit of tt?


i am my own betrayal by guillaume morissette


i ordered this book two months ago when i was still in england and only received it a week ago. i had been reading lorrie moore & also re-reading bits and pieces of lydia davis but decided to start something new this week. felt like a good decision because i enjoyed reading this book lots, to the extent that i would get copies for friends who i feel would appreciate books like this.

thoughts on the first story, ‘vaster emptiness achieved’:

i liked reading this story a lot because i felt like i identified with maybe not the entire situation but perhaps parts of it for example this description:

'it didn’t take long for me to feel like there was some sort of invisible glass window between us and maybe a lack of positive intimacy also' 

i also felt like i identified with the speaker’s emotions and this quote is something that i felt recently especially after coming home and explaining a particular situation to people and being aware that i am looking for advice on what to do and thinking about the might or might nots which is what the 'main character’ was doing in the book

'i don’t know how to evaluate whether being with anika is a good thing or a bad thing or a neutral thing or what is it. i feel like i should get myself a suggestion box, label it 'life advice’, put it around my neck, carry it around and just let people tell me what to do.’

felt gratified that the 'speaker’/person in this situation reacted in ways that i felt was human and was not being false or hiding emotions in order to portray himself in a certain way like when the speaker emailed her to tell her that 'i liked her but that this wouldn’t work out and that i would start looking elsewhere’. felt glad that there was someone out there who would act in this way even if this was a fictional character. i liked that guillaume identifies and recognizes these situations. i like that he writes about them in a clear and distinct manner ('concrete’) ie. introduction of context/the way in which he & 'anika’ met and how their interactions began & weaving the story through the dissolution of a relationship with another girl before reaching the part that might be 'the point’ of the story (although that i am aware may be my own interpretation of this story)

i feel interested in the way people reach out to each other on the internet i think because i feel like it often ends as abruptly as it begins (which this story suggests)

i also like the turn/rhythm of the sentences, the phrases guillaume uses consistently surprises me. i think this is how it works: a premise is introduced, the logical extension of that proposition will follow, but what comes next is a new idea/image which is not 'irrational’, but neither one that can be directly inferred. which is what makes it a delight.

the images/ideas offered are often also personal—'i like the internet because i envy the internet. it lives without the hindrance and limitations of a body and i don’t.' the last 'i don’t’ endears the speaker to the reader/me really; the fact that the speaker is self-aware of these altogether painful and sad-making things and puts them into language seems good

i have thought this before: 'buy nothing, move forward linearly through time, never think anything.’ —what i wonder is how much of this is for me is a 'coping mechanism’ to detach myself from reality and people and emotions or something that i believe will sustain me beyond the near future

i enjoyed the poems as well especially

poems are for no one, very long poems are for themselves


the awkward and irrational logic behind
missing someone would be hard to
explain to a small child except maybe if
the small child knows that feeling sad
is okay and you tell the small child that
missing someone is an illness of the brain.

my bed is a mess, it misses you. it’s been
having nightmares about being suffocated to
death with a red pillow. to calm the bed down
I have read the bed a bedtime story of printed-out
e-zine articles on ways to overcome a heartbreak.

intimacy is addictive. staring at the back of your
head at night is a small personal interaction that I miss
but didn’t expect to. sometimes in my sleep I want
to bump into you or else maybe roll over you but can’t.
I should have rolled over you very hard in my sleep,
to crush you into the bed and prevent you from leaving.

to invest a lot of energy into thinking about you
constantly is to considerably hate myself.

I miss you and I miss you naked. those are two
completely separate ways of missing you.

the bed is being a jerk to me. in the morning I wake up
with bed hair ten percent worse than usual. the bed is
accusing me I think of not missing you genuinely and just
being a weak person unable to cope with the large,
unfathomable feeling of suddenly having no one to care about.

as usual my feelings will adopt the physical shape of an
upside-down heart in the open office document, or at least
this is what the shape looks like to me. does it look different to
you; yes the physical shape of my feelings is a rorschach test.

what is right with me; very little.
I need a moment please.


lately I have been missing you in the form of
angel-shaped drool stains on my pillow.

a printed-out e-zine article informed me that occupying the mind
is the best way to get over missing someone, so yesterday
I worked almost all day on school stuff and lit stuff and emails.
most days I put more effort into emails than into school stuff.

at the end of the day I was tired and wanted to not think
anymore and to not stare at anything anymore, just
maybe close my eyes and make out with someone but
there was no one to make out with, is this tragic or what;

a refreshing way to overcome my pride would be
to send you an email whose subject line reads,
‘I miss you’ and whose body reads, ‘see subject line.’
the bed looks depressed. its red sheets remind it
of your red winter coat and also of the red cover of
that book you gave me. the bed misses our bed talk.
at night, I can hear it make dolphin sounds in an
attempt to reach out and communicate. the noises
bounce off the walls and return to the bed, which
makes the bed feel shunned and very discouraged.

my serotonin level is often at its highest when no one is around.
to sabotage myself is to prevent others from doing so. what is
the meaning of missing you; a subject matter to tackle in a future
poem maybe, one whose best lines aren’t even the funniest.

in my sleep, I rolled over from the bed and fell on the floor. I felt calm
because I have no particular associative memories of you and the floor.

one way to power through this self-imposed passive-affective mood
would be to do push-ups by the bed until I am bulked up and muscular,
an entirely different person capable of rolling over in the bed multiple
times, creating heat and making the bed as warm as when you were in it.

why does the empty bed keep happening to me;
I probably deserve it. I need a moment please.


I have been more of a facebook profile than
a person lately. yesterday the status updates
were cascading down the page like a zen waterfall
so I sat still and listened. what does the waterfall
says; the subtext is unknown, and possibly nothing.

the bed is in a coma now. I said your name to the bed
and it shivered so I put an additional blanket on the bed.

missing you is one problem, how to conclude this poem
is another. I don’t think ahead, I think through. to write this
poem was mostly a ploy to kill time until our situation evolved.

but nothing happened. I feel the same now as I felt on the very
first line of this poem, except maybe for the disconnect between
what I do and what I want, which has somehow accentuated itself.

do you remember when the bed was so happy to see
you that it jumped on itself; that never happened, I lied.
I just wanted to leave you with a pleasant image of the bed.
throughout this very long process of mildly deranged
soul-searching I have determined that lovesickness is
a discouraging crisis for which tangible solutions include
a large black tea and stepping away from the keyboard.

but missing you is also a hiddenness of the
mind, the devoted, uncertain sensation that
perhaps there will never be certitudes, just more
feasible or less feasible longings and desires.

which reminds me,
let me state how hot you are: very.

can I start the poem over; I am not sure
you can do that. I need a moment please.

thoughts on 'and how they all fell to and speedily devoured the muskallonge that had eaten the carp’

the main character 'leigh’ creates animations for a video game and the nature of her form of art is that these cartoon giraffes are not 'grounded’ in reality / the effect of this as explained in a conversation between 'leigh’ and her friend 'ellen’ was that the things a person spends his time on/thinking about has a lateral effect that expands beyond the activity itself. i liked this part of the story because i felt like it illustrated clearly something i had been thinking about which is that an explanation for why people gravitate towards different ends of polarized activities which occur within the realm of a same umbrella of interest is because some people want to engage the emotions they feel in their art & others want to do things that distance themselves from these emotions

'he started thinking about death all the time, said ellen, 'making weird jokes about death. we didn’t want to play with him anymore. my point is, everything is consequential. in your case, you don’t spend your days thinking about death, you spend them thinking about stuff that doesn’t exist and also doesn’t interest you. solving the problems of cartoon characters. and you think because it doesn’t exist that it has no effect on you.’

'so i haven’t lost it,’ said leigh. 'i am just numb. i need to be stimulated more.’

'right,’ said ellen.

this story differs from the other stories in this book because it’s focus is less on the emotions derived from relationships 'love’ and more on work-related thoughts/behaviour. even then i felt like this story had a clear 'direction’ and the sense that the character was doing things to solve her initial dissatisfaction with her job. i liked the small actions that went mostly unnoticed by her colleagues of adding a depth of emotions to her giraffe animations/a sense of grounding to the otherwise artificial/virtual reality therefore allowing human people maybe to relate to the animations. or for herself to feel like what she was doing is meaningful. (the latter is an example of 'the capacity of an individual to respond to the sense of alienation created by the deskilling of the work place’) what i am interested in understanding is why it seems important for humans to relate to others & why 

thoughts on 'karpman drama triangle' 

i really enjoyed this story as well, i like reading stories about interactions i think which are explained 'from the beginning’ which allows me to grasp the situation & perhaps understand the reactions of different characters. the same situation (a boy and a girl making out on a bed while another boy who likes the girl is also on the bed) is re-told from the 'points of view’ of these three characters, fleshing out our understanding of the situation. it seems interesting to know how two people perceive the same moment of interaction, what they feel or think. feel like i have not read a story (or at least have a strong memory of reading one) which explores the 'reality’ of a situation through different perspectives, therefore acknowledging the subjectivity of perception

quotes/sentences from the story i liked: 

'in the bed, she was lying next to joel but made no move or gesture to suggest that she was interested in him, mostly waited there, paralyzed a little, hoping, somehow, to power-think her way into a desirable situation. since arriving, she hadn’t slept with or kissed or even been close to another person, wanted to experience a north american lover, just one, to see what that was like, how they compared, but didn’t like to talk about it, felt shy a little, intimidated even, though wasn’t sure by what. joel was both older and taller than her. next to him, she felt tiny, child-like, like something you could fold in half, preserve for later.

'the kiss, mark felt, was interesting for several reasons, because joel was in the bed close to them, because she had been the one to kiss him and not the other way around, because he didn’t want to go too far and yet apparently kept going. he wasn’t sure why he was making out with her. he knew that he was just another peron she made out with, that if he allowed himself to develop anything beyond some loose, retractable affection for her, like the power cord of a vacuum cleaner, their relationship would spin out if its axis, lead to a more noticeable drinking habit, a passive, subdued kind of despair and maybe someone making someone else a mixtape.’

'she disliked money, not so much the process of having and spending as much as being unable to reconcile the disorganized person she was inside herself with the structured person she had to pretend being outside herself to obtain it, a kind of epic struggle between an inward independence and an outward conformity.’


'before i started seeing meghan last year, the fiasco of that,’ he had said, 'there was that one time where she described her ideal lover. she listed a whole bunch of things, like he needed to be a good cook and have a car and stuff. in my head, i pictured her shopping for boyfriends at the boyfriend supermarket, taking one from a shelf, checking the expiration date, putting it in the cart, crossing an item off her list or somethig. i was like, 'that’s not how it works.’ how it works is that we fit into each other’s fantasy matrices for reasons we’re not sure we understand. that’s not how it works.’

'not a lot of people fit into mine,’ alison had said. 'i’ve been mostly interested in people not interested in me.’

'i feel like you probably end up a lot in situations where the other person is wowed by you and you’re entertained by it but not wowed in particular,’ he had said, 'so on some level it feels uneven. and if you try liking someone that doesn’t like you, as soon as you do, you get bored.’

'that seems about right,’ alison had said. 'what does that say about me i wonder. something terrible i think. something dark and sinister. like dubstep.’

alison had laughed at her own comment. (there is a typo here i just noticed this on the page)

'you just want a relationship of mutual respect,’ he had said.

'people who like me make me intensely uncomfortable,’ alison had said, 'because i never think they really like me, i always think they like the person they imagine me to be. and that eventually they’ll realize i am not that person and then ditch me. so i don’t want that.’

'you’re easy to fantasize about i think,’ he had said, 'in a sexual way i guess, but i mean it more like in a personal way. you don’t come off as mysterious or guarded or whatever, so i can see people thinking that they know all they need to know about you and that they can just fill in the blanks in their heads with whatever seems convenient to them.’

'that’s unfortunate,’ allison had said.

i feel like a reason this book felt like a good read was also because of the rationality that seems to permeate his writing. things are described concretely and when adjectives like 'interesting’ or 'good’ is used the characters always define what they mean exactly when using that/their justification for the use of these adjectives. seems interesting to have a mixture of both fiction & poetry in one book & i felt interested in its ability to sustain my attention. felt like my attention was not only sustained but that this book provoked certain thoughts/re-organization of perception—for example wondering if the sense of detachment i feel lately is 'self-imposed’/psychological & if so why/how this occurred & its effect on my actions— & that in itself made it feel like it was worth my time. feel glad that i own a copy of this book, that it will be available on my bookshelf for me to pick up in time to come. feel concretely that i want guillaume to do more writing & that i would buy his future books

thoughts after writing this: seems apparent that an effect of teaching literature lately is overly verbose writing and an urge to analyse anything i read

started: 17th june 2012

finished: 20th june 2012