David Gutowski said it best:
In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Bret Easton Ellis, Kate Christensen, Kevin Brockmeier, George Pelecanos, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Myla Goldberg, Heidi Julavits, Hari Kunzru, and many others.
I’m excited to be a part of the extensive Largehearted Boy contributors list. My contribution, a book notes entry pertaining to my latest title, “The Fun We’ve Had.”
The theoretical soundtrack populating the empty spaces of the novel, The Fun We’ve Had, that’s what I’m going to attempt to do here. These are the noises, the sounds, the ambience, the epic crescendos, as well as the depressing and anticlimactic lows that will inevitably occur across the endless purgatorial sea in the book. It both accentuates and masks the voice of the titular sea.
Click here for the playlist.
Alexandra Naughton and I got drunk over Skype and talked for upwards of six hours. The podcast linked here is an edited down version, somewhere near two hours in length. Hope it’s coherent because I’m sure we weren’t for most of it.
That Lit Podcast with Alexandra Naughton. This episode features a lengthy conversation with author and lit hustler, Michael J. Seidlinger. The two get drunk and discuss the lit biz, the idea of ‘surpassing your mentors,’ Seidlinger’s book The Fun We’ve Had, Billy Corgan as facsimile, and other juicy gossip.
Click here to listen.
Man, it seems like Jayme Karales has been killing it lately with the Shootin It podcast. Really excited to have been on the show recently where Jayme and I talked social media, my latest book, “The Fun We’ve Had,” James Franco, Civil Coping Mechanisms, and more.
Click here to tune in.
Alongside three other amazing books, “Scarecrone” by Melissa Broder, “Earthbound” by Ken Baumann, and “Horse Girl” by Kalliopi Mathios, Dennis not only read The Fun We’ve Had but also made certain to mention on his blog, DC’s, that he enjoyed/recommended it. A long time fan of Dennis Cooper’s work, both on the page and on the stage, this is truly a humbling and heartwarming occasion. Cooper continues to be a model lit citizen wherein he continues to innovate and create new benchmarks for the rest of us to admire while also looking over his shoulder to keep track of the indie/literary scene while he continues his ascent. There aren’t many out there that insist on maintaining a foothold on the conditions of the literary scene but Dennis Cooper has been doing this for as long as anyone can remember. He’s truly one of the best and I’m absolutely ecstatic to know that Dennis loved The Fun We’ve Had.
Click here for the entire post.
My airport performance art retrospective went live today over at Electric Literature. In the essay, I detail out the motivations, confusions, considerations, and various inebriations that transpired over the 48 hour period. If you give it a read, hope it sounds as crazy as it felt. Here’s a sample from the essay:
The idea was simple yet absurd: Live in an airport for forty-eight hours to promote my latest book, The Fun We’ve Had. This would be long enough to feel stranded, and more than enough to feel distanced from the blasé of daily routine. At the time, I didn’t know how long that would actually be. I feared that I’d barely make it past the twelve-hour mark.I feared that I’d barely make it past the twelve-hour mark.
I would remain online and available, tweeting and posting for the duration of the performance. It sounded like fun, maybe, but it helped that I wasn’t alone at the airport, joined by Kyle Muntz, a good friend and author of a number of books, including his most recent, Green Lights.
It helped that the airport functioned as a suitable metaphor for the book’s setting, given that being in an airport is a lot like being lost at sea. So many places and possibilities to drift, but not if you don’t already know where it is that you’re going. In the case of Kyle and I, we weren’t going anywhere. We weren’t actually getting on an airplane. We remained in stasis, disconnected from all tethers except the digital variety for the entire duration of the performance.
This was a performance.
This was an experiment.
And it was also a sort of nontraditional celebration of a book’s official publication because, in theory, I wanted to do something totally different, even if it ended up being a failure.
Click here for the full article.
Now this is quite a surprise. The Barnes & Noble blog featured “The Fun We’ve Had” in their monthly roundup of indie lit books worth buying. It’s a great lineup. Truly in good company. Here’s what Ashley Brooke Roberts had to say about the book:
A man and a woman are adrift in a never-ending sea. Did I mention they’re in a coffin? Also, we have no idea who “they” are, known only as “he” and “she.” Is it a story? A metaphor for relationships? All I know is that Seidlinger is consistently enjoyable to read, and whatever world he’s created here will be engaging, colorful, and, as the title says, most definitely fun.
Click here to check out the rest of the list.
Peter Tieryas Liu is awesome. Just look at the picture above. He’s all smiles all the time. The guy’s the best, and then he goes and does something like this, recommending my latest novel. This guy is pure metal. Here’s a sample from his recommendation:
Michael Seidlinger’s The Fun We’ve Had is a mix of life, death, hate, love, a journey inside a coffin in the ocean, an allegory for the wars we wage against the inevitability of mortality. Like a modern Camus, nothing less than existence is at stake in Seidlinger’s latest voyage: “Each wave is its own feeling, rhythmic crashing of those that resist the tides… The waves are hellos; the incoming storm is the sincerest goodbye.” Sincerity, a struggle for candor, conflicted machismo, embroidered secrets that are exposed, armies of sharks, and the lines painted into the waves are the troughs and crests that fluctuate through the spectrum of human nature.
Click here for the full recommendation.
The Fanzine published an amazing review of The Fun We’ve Had. Big shout out to James Yates for writing the review, Sarah Rose Etter for editing, Casey McKinney for making the review possible, and Blake Butler being all around awesome. Here’s a snippet from the review:
Seidlinger does craft a genuinely moving story about a relationship. There’s affection on both sides, even if the problems appear insurmountable. Throughout the experimental forms, there’s a genuine affectation the reader feels for these characters. And while the question isn’t meant to be an explicit one like “Will they survive?” or “Will they overcome their differences?,” little passages take on sweet, even old-fashioned sentiments in beautiful ways.
He wouldn’t be able to know without letting go, without letting the coffin float in that direction, the direction where only he can go, the direction where they part ways.
Click here for the full review.