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Updated: 2018-04-14T06:49:28.187-04:00


column @ Vice


a weekly series of posts on books and shit(163) Actually, The Great Gatsby is Trash(162) This Bike Poet Delivers Dreams to Your Doorstep(161) The 22 Best Books I Read in 2016(160) Three Beach Reads To Make Your Summer Less Boring and Alone(159) Being a Professional 'Hearthstone' Gamer Is Harder Than It Looks(158) These Short Films Will Self Destruct After You Watch Them(157) The Familiar Would Like To Be Less Familiar Than It Actually Is(156) Brian Evenson's Writing is as Brutal as it is Beautiful(155) Throwing Confetti in Death's Face with Derek McCormack(154) The Hallucinatory Terror of Unica Zürn(153) Three Books Blurring the Borders of Memory and Reality(152) John Keene's 'Counternarratives' Rewires History With Imagination(151) Heather Christle's 'Heliopause' Disintegrates Reality(150) 'Aqua Teen Hunger Force Forever' is the End of an Era(149) People Who Died Trying To Set World Records(148) Three Short, Savage Books You Have To Read(147) Underappreciated Masterpieces: Why Did I Ever (2001)(146) Andrew James Weatherhead Proves You Don't Have To Share Every Single Thing That Comes Into Your Mind(145) Finding Love with Asperger's(144) Ubu Publishes the Unpublishable(143) This Novel Is Made Entirely of Terrifying GIFs(142) The Unexpected Favorite Films of Your Favorite Celebrities(141) Food is a Private Hell, Love is a Private Hell(140) Have You Ever Dreamed of 'This Man'?(139) All the Books I Read in 2014(138) We Live In Hiromi Ito's Wasteland(137) A Roller Coaster Designed To Kill People(136) A Written Museum of Murder, Suicide, and Revelation in Baltimore(135) The Top 10 Worst Beatles Songs(134) Six Uniquely Terrifying Books for Halloween(133) Talking Video Games and Ghosts with John Darnielle(132) Yannick Murphy Puts You In The Mind of a Serial Killer(131) Grandiose Predictions for the 2014-15 NFL Season(130) Geographic North Redefines Space(129) Love in the Time of Xanax and Nokia(128) Thirty Years of Dalkey Archive Press(127) The Bizarre and Terrifying Propaganda Art of the Children of God(126) Sprezzatura Basically Means You're Chill but You Give a Shit(125) Underappreciated Masterpieces: J.G. Ballard's High-Rise(124) Why Do So Many Soft Drinks Taste Like Teletubby Blood?(123) Summer Reading List: Zombie Hordes, Snuff Films, Haunted Computers(122) The 2015 NBA All-Star Flop Challenge(121) M. Geddes Gengras Makes Electronic Music for the Last Wild Indian(120) How Many Crystals Do You Have Left Inside You?(119) America Needs Alzheimer's Funding Now(118) Joe Wenderoth Cannot Be Vanquished(117) Underappreciated Masterpieces: Javier Marías's Dark Back of Time(116) Are Blake Griffin's Kia Commercials Psychic Warfare?(115) Some Books Can Watch You Read Them(114) Owning Porno Used To Mean Something, Damnit(113) If I Can't Be Brain Damaged I Don't Want To Read(112) Anyone Who Isn't Dead is a Witch(111) It's Time to Rethink the Crime Genre(110) Hill William Sings Ghost Country(109) American Art Needs More Holes(108) An Interview with Richard Garfield, Creator of Magic: The Gathering(107) Future Harper's Index of America(106) The Uncanny Puzzles of Jesse Ball(105) Whoops, I Like Pro Football(104) Sci-Fi Doesn't Have To Be Dominated by Horny Bro Wizards(103) What Is This Terror Before Me: A Review of the New Taco Bell Grilled Stuft Nacho(102) Brief Reviews of Every Movie I Saw in 2013(101) All the Books I Read in 2013(100) I Have Voluntary Tourette's (and am insane)(99) Portrait of the Marquis de Sade as a Young Female Hacker(98) Books I Gave Up On Reading(97) Reviews of Churches That Won't Stop Growing(96) Implausible Literary Halloween Costumes No One Will Recognize(95) Learning How To Haunt Yourself(94) The Many False Floors of Harry Mathews(93) Everyone is a Plagiarist(92) Thirteen Alternate Endings for Breaking Bad(91) Burning Bodies and Playing Dead with Jeff Jackson(90) What Celebrities Eat at Golden Corral(89) If You Build the Code, Your Computer Will Write the Novel(88) Windows That Lead To More Windows: An Interview With Gary Lutz(87) The Permutating Brain of Stephen Dixon(86) What I Remember from[...]

Sky Saw is released today


BUY from TYRANT BOOKSOrder from SPDOrder from AmazonBooks that reappear when you destroy them, lampshades made of skin, people named with numbers and who can’t recall each other, a Universal Ceiling constructed by an otherwise faceless authority, a stairwell stuffed with birds: the terrain and populace of SKY SAW is packed with stroboscopic memory mirage. In dynamic sentences and image, Blake Butler crafts a post-Lynchian nightmare where space and family have deformed, leaving the human persons left in the strange wake to struggle after the shapes of both what they loved and who they were.The klieg-light intensity of Butler's writing intimates that there is something fundamentally terrifying about what each of us does every single night, which is to pitch our minds and bodies into oblivion. — TIMEIn an interview published in the winter 2010 issue of the PARIS REVIEW, Jonathan Franzen said to Stephen Burn, "I've never felt less self-consciously preoccupied with language than I did when I was writing FREEDOM. Over and over again, as I was producing chapters, I said to myself, 'This feels nothing like the writing I did for twenty years—this just feels transparent.'’ Franzen added that this struck him as "a good sign"—an indication that he was "pressing language more completely into the service of providing transparent access to the stories I was telling and to the characters in those stories."Blake Butler is the opposite of that. — BOOKFORUMI couldn't tell what was really happening and what wasn't or who it was or wasn't happening too. I really wanted to know if they were dreaming awake talking about themselves or an entity. If you can read this book and understand it than truly you are amazing and can read anything. I must be a daft idiot cause this book made me want to kill it and myself for even trying so hard. — Shree Lafaye Ziller AMAZON.comButler is the 21st century answer to William Burroughs. – PUBLISHERS WEEKLY[...]



a section deleted from Nothing appears at the newly relaunched Fanzine, concerning Joseph Cornell, Heather Christle, Joyelle McSweeney, and James Joyce: Hybrid Locations: Thoughts on Dreaming or Insomnia and Language

Anatomy Courses



Available today from Lazy Fascist, cowritten with Sean Kilpatrick.

Many thanks to Cameron Pierce for releasing this slim strange book I never thought would be released.

More information.

Nothing: A Portrait of Insomnia


My first book of nonfiction came out this week.


Review in Time

Review in New York Times (Editor's Choice)

Review in Creative Loafing

Review/interview at Fanzine

Review in Atlanta Journal & Constitution

Review at Onion A/V Club

Interview in Interview

Radio Interview on The Brian Lehrer Show (WNYC)

Podcast at Other People

* * *

You can get Nothing now at Amazon, SPD, stores, etc.

i gave my dad some candy


MOM: What do you say when someone gives you something you want?
DAD: I want this.

30 Under 30


i have extra copies of this 30 Under 30 Anthology of younger innovative writers I edited with Lily Hoang, out a month or so ago. if you would like one, paypal $12 to blakebutler [at] gmail [dot] com (shipping included)

"30 Under 30 offers an impressive cross-section of innovative American fiction by young writers. If you're tired of the 'authorized version' and want a sense of where fiction is really going, what its future shapes and forms are likely to be, this is the place to start." - Brian Evenson, author of Fugue State and The Open Curtain.

"Cops in the clouds, a father and daughter’s mythic severing, fictions of spreadsheets, a story ending in future tense. For those young enough still to live in language, words are tangible as slivers, as hard candy in the mouth. These thirty assemble the outlandish, the ecstatic, the wild, and there’s a conviction they can just do this." - R. M. Berry, author of Frank and Dictionary of Modern Anguish

CONTRIBUTORS: Joanna Ruocco » Brian Oliu » Michael J. Lee » Angi Becker Stevens » Shane Jones » Devin Gribbons » Christina Kloess » James Yeh » William Seabrook » Danielle Adair » Megan Milks » Rachel Glaser » Michael Stewart » Sean Kilpatrick » Andrea Kneeland » Zach Dodson » Beth Couture » Mike Young » Kathleen Rooney & Elisa Gabbert » Joshua Cohen » Matt Bell » Adam Good » Andrew Farkas » Jaclyn Dwyer » Ryan Downey » Ryan Call » Kristina Born » Conor Madigan » Rebecca Jean Kraft » Evenlyn Hampton



what would happen if a private source offered $5 million to 1st American who can convince someone in their family to commit suicide on film

This story is called wrote a new story today


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you can now get my book EVER in ebook form for $6 from Calamari Press



In the Heart of the Country by Coetzee is really fantastic



things are gpomg tp get worse arent they






"There was a wall in him that no one reached. Not even Clara, though she assumed it had deformed him. A tiny stone swallowed years back that had grown with him and which he carried around because he could not shed it. His motive for hiding it had probably extinguished itself years earlier. . . . Patrick and his small unimportant stone. It had entered him at the wrong time in his life. Then it had been a flint of terror. He could have easily turned aside at the age of seven or twenty, and just spat it out and kept on walking, and forgotten it by the next street corner.

"So we are built."

There is No Year reading tour


Going out for a little stretch on the road to do reading junk from There is No Year; if you are nearby, would be rad to hang out!

Monday, April 11, 2011
1005 West Burnside Portland, OR 97210

Tuesday, April 12, 2011
4326 University Way Seattle, WA 98105

Thursday, April 14, 2011
261 Columbus AVE San Francisco, CA 94133-4586

Friday, April 15, 2011
1818 N. Vermont AVE Los Angeles, CA 90027

Sunday, April 17, 2011
Largehearted Lit series - at WORD
126 Franklin ST Brooklyn, NY 11222

Monday, April 18, 2011
52 Prince ST New York, NY 10012

Wednesday, April 20, 2011
279 Harvard St Brookline, MA 02446

There is No Year drops today


Seems wild to already be at April 5 2011, but here we are.

There is No Year is available widely, including online at several places found here.

Amazon has it for like less than $9, and there are the brick stores that are alive.


An immense honor to have blurbs from two of my favorite writers of all time:

“If there’s a more thoroughly brilliant and exciting new writer than Blake Butler, . . . well, there just isn’t. I’ve literally lost sleep imagining the fallout when There Is No Year drops and American fiction shifts its axis.”
— Dennis Cooper

"Blake Butler, mastermind and visionary, has sneaked up and drugged the American novel. What stumbles awake in the aftermath is feral and awesome in its power, a fairy tale of an ordinary family subjected to the strange, lonesome agony known as daily life. There is No Year is a merciless novel cleansed of joy, pumped full of fear and awe."
— Ben Marcus

Thanks again to all who've done so much for me and continue to do so much. I couldn't feel happier.

I hope you'll check out the book if you feel it.



"In fantasies of romance it was she who fought and overcame thereon to rescue some object or figure that never in the reverie resolved or took to itself any shape or name."

4 Recent Internet Shits of Me Running My Mouth Etc


Profile of myself & HTMLGiant & There is No Year at the NY Observer: concerning David Lynch, internet machines, ego blur, and getting shit done

Excerpt from There is No Year at the Collagist: three consecutive scenes from Part 2 of 4, re: the mother's relationship with a polymer egg and a lawnmower

Interview at Bomb re: 4-night marathon reading of There is No Year in NYC, the internet as place, metaphor as fartcity, etc.

q/a & new short text "Hexagon" @ The Center for Fiction's The Literarian: a recursive piece concerning fornication, hibernation, wanting, pig babies, ass ends of the universe(s), etc. (connected in some way to this other short piece published earlier this year at Guernica, "I do love god"

+ + +

Also to announce, my 4th book, a nonfiction work about sleep and insomnia, titled Nothing, is slated for release this November.

No Year Prelease NYC marathon events





"Are you in there?" "In where." "In you." [shakes head no] "Where are you then?" "I don't know." "Where would you like to be?" "I don't give a shit." "What would make you happy?" "I don't know." [drinks V8]

There is No Year reviewed by PW, Kirkus, Library Journal


3 nice reviews from nice places seems nicefrom Publishers Weekly:Butler's inventive third book is dedicated "For no one" and begins with an eerie prologue about the saturation of the world with a damaging light. Suitably forewarned, the reader is introduced to an unexceptional no-name family. All should be idyllic in their newly purchased home, but they are shadowed by an unwelcome "copy family." In the face of the copy mother, the mother sees her heretofore unrealized deterioration. Things only get worse as the father forgets how to get home from work; the mother starts hiding in the closet, plagued by an omnipresent egg; while the son gets a female "special friend" and receives a mysterious package containing photos of dead celebrities. The territory of domestic disillusion and postmodern dystopia is familiar from other tales, but Butler's an endlessly surprising, funny, and subversive writer. This subversion extends to the book's design: very short titled chapters with an abundance of white space. Not so much a novel as a literary tapestry, the book's eight parts are separated by blank gray pages. To Butler (Scorch Atlas), everything in the world, even the physical world, is gray and ever-changing, and potentially menacing. (Apr.) from Kirkus:A family lives in a house in which strange things start to happen (or—it’s a new novel by Blake Butler).Love him, hate him or feign indifference: There’s really no other way to react to the work of writer/postmodernist/multi-hyphenate Butler (Ever, 2009, etc). For those who like their prose fresh out of a cleaner and more traditional wellspring, Blake’s writing can prove tedious at best and arduous at worst. But for those who lean toward writing that is more visceral, taxing or outright demanding of the reader, this might be the right cup of tea—see Mark Z. Danielewski’s House of Leaves (2000), to which this novel owes some debt. The book concerns a family of doppelgängers so featureless that Butler doesn’t bother to give them names (or more accurately, likely purposefully washes them out to their elementary characteristics). So, the father, the mother and the son live in a house, just like the carbon copy father, mother and son had done before them. The father stares at a computer screen. The mother stares at her lined face in mirrors and thinks protective thoughts about her son, who suffers from a disease that nearly ended his life. The son goes to school, makes a friend and watches television with his family. It’s all presented in hushed, monochrome language that gives the whole enterprise a sense of menace from the beginning, even before Butler introduces the father’s paranoia that things in the house are changing without his knowledge. And then things do start changing.A gruesome slice of familial oddity that demonstrates its author’s versatility.from Library Journal:Butler keeps the reader guessing in his latest novel. A family moves into a house where another family lives—a lifeless, unseeing copy of the family. The family goes through individual psychological and paranormal experiences that make one wonder about the origins of the family’s demise—Is it the son’s carefully mentioned past disease? Some metaphysical demon in the son’s subconscious? Or does the newly purchased house cloak discontented poltergeists? Whatever the cause, each family member endures a private psychological hell that is disturbing in its authenticity. ­VERDICT This artfully crafted, stunning piece of nontraditional literature is r[...]



"When the notes were all burned, all that writing, as Franz expressed himself, he, Wertheimer, called up Salzburg and ordered the piano and Franz distinctly recalled that during this telephone call his master kept insisting that they send a completely worthless, a horribly untuned grand piano to Traich. A completely worthless instrument, a horribly untuned instrument, Wertheimer is supposed to have repeated over and over on the phone, said Franz."






you don't have to beg a dog to shit in the house they just do it



"The Make-A-Wish Foundation ceased granting hunting trips in 1999, amid criticisms from animal rights groups. The Foundation explained that the decision was based on the danger of having a child in a weakened state handling firearms."