paper trail

Brandon Taylor to talk with Arinze Ifeakandu

Arinze Ifeakandu. Photo: Bec Stupak Diop

“What or who inspired you to start writing?” Jessica Swoboda asks Tobi Haslett in an interview published by The Point. Haslett responds: “Impossible question, in part because I’m one of those people who always wanted to be a writer. But I may or may not be freakish in that I can recall the specific moment when I decided that actually going for it might not be a complete waste of time. The spring I graduated from college, n+1 published an essay called ‘Cultural Revolution.’ It was a manifesto, or at least I read it as one.”

On his excellent Substatck Sweater Weather, Brandon Taylor writes an essay about the varied responses to Hanya Yanagihara's A Little Life, and about grand theories regarding the state of contemporary gay fiction. “I sometimes wonder what to make of these critiques from both the so-called TenderQueer squishy gays and the…I don’t know what to call them, but you know, the ones who read Marx and tweet memes online and listen to podcasts,” Taylor, the author of Real Life, writes. “Those ones. I wonder what to make of their alternating charges of too much sex, too little sex, too much drugs, not enough, etc. Particularly because the platonic homosexual experience over which they are scrapping in the representational field is ultimately a white, cis, and abled homosexual experience, no?”

Jennifer Senior, author of All Joy and No Fun, profiles Steve Bannon for The Atlantic. “You can discern much of Bannon’s mad character and contradictions in these exchanges,” Senior writes of the strings of text messages Bannon sends out. “The chaos and the focus, the pugnacity and the enthusiasm, the transparency and the industrial-grade bullshit. Also, the mania: logomania, arithmomania, monomania (he’d likely cop to all of these, especially that last one—he’s the first to say that one of the features of his show is “wash rinse repeat”). Garden-variety hypermania (with a generous assist from espressos). And last of all, perhaps above all else, straight-up megalomania, which even those who profess affection for the man can see, though it appears to be a problem only for those who believe, as I do, that he’s attempting to insert a lit bomb into the mouth of American democracy.”

Bill Gates has some new book recommendations for your summer-reading list. 

Esquire has posted a list of the twenty best books of the summer. 

Tomorrow (Tuesday) at 7:30pm at the Fort Greene location of Greenlight Bookstore, Brandon Taylor will talk with Arinze Ifeakandu about his debut book, God's Children Are Little Broken Things, which is made up of nine stories about gay life in contemporary Nigeria. Cohosted by A Public Space.