Matthew Simmons lives in Seattle with his cat, Emmett. He is a blogger (themanwhocouldntblog.blogspot.com, htmlgiant.com) and the author of A Jello Horse (Publishing Genius Press).
(I started this a couple of months ago and put it aside. I have decided to see how things have changed for me. Not a lot.)
what are you reading now
For Those Whom God has Blessed with Fingers by Ken Sparling, which is amazingly good.
The Failure Six by Shane Jones appeared in my mailbox last night. I've started it and am enjoying it. I've also been reading The Jerusalem Syndrome by Marc Maron, The Book of Jokes by Momus, and Big Machine by Victor LaValle. I have a roving eye when it comes to reading. It is often my undoing.
Oh, and The Ask by Sam Lipsyte. Holy Smokes, The Ask. Fantastic.
classic you’ve been meaning to read
The Idiot by Dostoevsky and Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace. I hope to get them both read this summer.
I didn't. Answer remains the same, though. Add The Third Policeman to it. I have that one on my night table.
last book to bring you to tears
Dear Everybody by Michael Kimball. Blake mentioned one of his other books in his recommended reading list, and I have that one, and now I'm afraid that Michael will make me cry again.
Same. Ablutions was a contender.
funniest book or story title
Funniest book I've ever read is The Lecturer's Tale by James Hynes, which is both a satire of academia and a gothic horror novel in one.
Or, wait. Did you mean the funniest title for a book? I'm pretty sure Eeeee Eee Eeee wins that one. Ricky's Anus is pretty good, too.
best american short stories, pen/o. henry prizes, or the pushcart prize anthology
Best American Short Stories from 1990. Denis Johnson's "Car-Crash While Hitchhiking." Millhauser's "Eisenheim the Illusionist." Lorrie Moore's "You're Ugly, Too" "Typical" by the amazing Padgett Powell. "The Reverse Bug" by Lore Segal. Joy Williams.
Same one. The one from 1990 is a hell of an anthology.
if you could subscribe to only one literary journal
Toss up between New York Tyrant and NOON right now. But I also am obscenely loyal to my friends at Hobart.
I am now just loyal to Hobart. I set up a swear jar in an effort to not be so obscene. And it worked!
best thing you’ve read online recently
The fake Steve Buscemi and Christopher Walken twitter feeds.
Michael Martone's 4foraQuarter twitter feed.
most anticipated upcoming release
Amelia Gray's upcoming FC2 book Museum of the Weird.
Also, Extra Lives: Why Video Games Matter by Tom Bissell. Kevin Sampsell's A Common Pornography. Everything here is the best thing ever by Justin Taylor. Reality Hunger by David Shields. Aaron Burch just won that Pank contest. Molly Gaudry's novella. Blake Butler's next two books.
I'd also like to see my friend Amy Minton finish the edits on her book of short stories so it can get out there and find a publisher. She's good, that one.
recommended reading list:
Holy Smokes 2009 Has Had Some Good Books
- Ablutions by Patrick deWitt
- AM/PM by Amelia Gray
- Fever Chart by Bill Cotter
- Chronic City by Jonathan Lethem
- God's Hazard by Nicholas Mosley
- Everything Matters! by Ron Currie
- Scorch Atlas by Blake Butler
- Last Days and Fugue State by Brian Evenson
- Ugly Man by Dennis Cooper
- On the Winding Stair by Joanna Howard
- Big World by Mary Miller
- MLKNG SCKLS by Justin Sirois
- Sometimes We're Always Real Same-Same by Mattox Roesch
- That Summertime Sound by Matthew Specktor
- Forecast by Shya Scanlon
- Misconception by Ryan Boudinot
I'm sure I'm forgetting a few. Mike Young's chapbook, MC Oroville's Answering Machine. Brandon Gorrell's Muu Muu House book. Tao's new book. Too many, really.