Monthly Archive for August, 2005

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Winners of the 27th Annual International 3-Day Novel Contest read from their Novel Love Block

Aug ’05
12:00 am

Winners of the 27th AnnualInternational 3-Day Novel Contest,Meghan Austin & Shannon Mullally read from their NovelLove BlockThursday, August 11th, 8:00 PMFREE
LOVE BLOCK by Meghan Austin and Shannon Mullally is the Winner of the 27th Annual International 3-Day Novel Contest. Love Block is a collaborative novel, written via phone and email by writers living on opposite ends of the United States. Through a series of correspondences, two secret agents debate, bicker and commiserate while they search for a mysterious cure for the lovelorn (possibly in the form of a \”love block\” potion that will foil any and all heartbreak). Love Block explores the question of whether or not humans should surrender to the idea of true love. It\’s funny, furious, sometimes crazy and always fast-moving, just like the 3-Day Novel contest itself.
Meghan Austin and Shannon Mullally met while earning their MFAs in Writing from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. When they agreed to collaborate on this contest, Austin was living in Portland, Oregon and Mullally was living in Chicago. They both now live in Chicago, where they continue to study and write. Love Block is their first published novel.
The 3-Day Novel Contest has run every Labour Day Weekend for 28 years and has garnered a reputation as the cheeky and uncompromising rebel of literary forms. It has been called \”a fad,\” \”a threat,\” and a \”trial by deadline\” and it flies in the face of the notion that novels take years of angst to produce. Although every entrant desires the Grand Prize of publication and instant fame, most enter the contest to shake off writers\’ block and to kick up their creativity. They?ll sweat, they?ll cry, their fingers will cramp?they may go mad?and they might just produce something amazing. And if they win, they?ll be published.
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TV-a-Go-Go with Jake Austen

Aug ’05
12:00 am

Jake Austen celebrates the release of his new bookTV-a-Go-Go – Rock on TV from American Bandstand to American IdolFriday August 26 8PM
Jake Austen is the editor of Roctober magazine, produces a cable-access children’s television rock show called Chic-a-Go-Go, and writes for magazines including Playboy. He is the editor of A Friendly Game of Poker.
TV-a-Go-Go: Rock on TV from American Bandstand to American Idol
From Elvis and a hound dog wearing matching tuxedos and the comic adventures of artificially produced bands to elaborate music videos and contrived reality-show contests, television ?as this critical look brilliantly shows? has done a superb job of presenting the energy of rock in a fabulously entertaining but patently “fake” manner. The dichotomy of “fake” and “real” music as it is portrayed on television is presented in detail through many generations of rock music: the Monkees shared the charts with the Beatles, Tupac and Slayer fans voted for corny American Idols, and shows like Shindig! and Soul Train somehow captured the unhinged energy of rock far more effectively than most long-haired guitar-smashing acts. Also shown is how TV has often delighted in breaking the rules while still mostly playing by them: Bo Diddley defied Ed Sullivan and sang rock and roll after he had been told not to, the Chipmunks’ subversive antics prepared kids for punk rock, and things got out of hand when Saturday Night Live invited punk kids to attend a taping of the band Fear. Every aspect of the idiosyncratic history of rock and TV and their peculiar relationship is covered, including cartoon rock, music programming for African American audiences, punk on television, Michael Jackson’s life on TV, and the tortured history of MTV and its progeny.
This will be a release party, with readings, rare video clip screenings and more.

McSweeney?s presents Salvador Plascencia and Paul La Farge

Aug ’05
12:00 am

McSweeney?s presentsSalvador Plascencia and Paul La FargeMonday, August 15th, 7:00 PMFREE
THE PEOPLE OF PAPER BY SALVADOR PLASCENCIA After his wife leaves him, Federico de la Fe and his daughter Little Merced depart the town of Las Tortugas, Mexico and head for Los Angeles. There, with the aid of a local street gang and the prophetic powers of a baby Nostradamus, they engage in an epic battle to find a cure for sadness. Mechanical tortoises, disillusioned saints hiding in wrestling rings, a woman made of paper, and Rita Hayworth are a few of the players whose destinies intertwine in this story of war and lost love. The People of Paper is simultaneously a father-daughter immigration story, a wildly inventive reimagining of Southern Californian mythology, and an exploration of the limits of fiction. Part memoir, part lies, this is a book about the wounds inflicted by first love and sharp objects.
Salvador Plascencia was born in 1976 in Guadalajara, Mexico. Plascencia?s mother was a seamstress, his father a factory worker who moved frequently between California and their home in Jalisco. Growing up at his grandparents? farm, his extended family passed along a wealth of stories, some of which formed the inspiration for The People of Paper. His family eventually settled east of Los Angeles in the city of El Monte when Plascencia was eight years old. At the time, he spoke no English. Salvador Plascencia holds a BA in English from Whittier College and an MFA in fiction from Syracuse University. He received a National Foundation for Advancement of the Arts Award in Fiction in 1996 and the Peter Nagoe Prize for Fiction in 2000. In 2001 he was awarded the Paul and Daisy Soros Fellowship for New Americans, the first fellow in fiction. The People of Paper is Plascencia?s first novel. His first published fiction appeared in McSweeney?s No. 12.
Paul Poissel was not born in 1848. As a young man, he did not set out to become the greatest Turkish architect in Paris. He did not fail to become the greatest Turkish architect in Paris. He never became a poet, or invented puzzles for an illustrated magazine. In 1904, he did not write this book, The Facts of Winter. Paul La Farge has translated (from the original French) this collection of dreams?funny, haunting, enigmatic?all dreamed by people in and around Paris in 1881. La Farge?s afterword investigates the Facts? creation, uncovering startling revelations, unknown truths, and new falsehoods.
La Farge is a frequent contributor to McSweeney?s and is the author of Haussmann, or the Distinction, a New York Times Notable Book, and The Artist of the Missing, winner of the California Book Award. He is also a leading scholar on the work of Paul Poissel, one of the least known of the little-known French ?tiny metaphysician? writers of the late 19th century.