Writing for the Absent Reader
Phantasmagorical Triptych of the Interstitial Hustle
What is Writing for the Absent Reader? Well, it’s like eating half a hot dog alone at a table set for two. It’s like muttering half a Baudelaire poem to the empty side of a park bench. It’s like three authors standing before a man who sits motionless as the crowd passes. How can these authors convey his pain? The Ferris wheel in mid-turn tipped over and tossed his son into the concession stands. Can they cradle him to sleep? Can they bring his son back? All they can do is turn feelings into fleeting mysteries.
Writing for the Absent Reader is an anthology of three genre-bending authors. Or is it a phantasmagorical triptych of the interstitial hustle? You be the judge.
The authors responsible for the madness are:
Duke Miller used to work with refugees and the displaced. During that time he got a bellyful of large and small crimes. He is now living a contemplative life in Mexico, one of the most misunderstood countries in the world. He knows the names of just about every beggar and drunk within walking distance of his house. Most of them are poets who like to imagine old lovers as hands floating in the air.
JT Twissel (Jan) starts each day with a glance at her horoscope. It’s always wrong but that doesn’t stop her. After her daily dose of bullshit she skips over to the obits. Yes, as morbid as it seems, she starts her day by reading about people who’ve just lived their last. Someday her horoscope will read “yesterday you died” and then she’ll skip over the obits and see how many words she rated. She obsesses over how many dying people write their own obits. She wonders what professional obit writers dream at night. She wonders a lot as you can tell – about a lot of things. She did her stint in the corporate world, in offices and cubes, riding out rounds of layoffs, days of glory and days of belt-tightening, office intrigues and performance reviews. What she has for her efforts is a cupboard full of cups and several drawers full of tee-shirts all advertising now defunct start-ups and dot coms. Now she’s a writer and a dreamer of lost dreams. Are they not one and the same?
Aaron Louis Asselstine thinks the art world is a nice restaurant with a kitchen bespattered in sweat and blood. The food is good and the service is good and the wine list can be counted on, but the cooks are mostly insane and they don’t shower that often and some of them drink too much and others have their drugs of choice and they would probably send a ripple of chatter through the eating area if one of them came out from the back for a drink at the bar. Or maybe that’s the way the art world used to be. “For me, to paint is a disease and an intoxication, a disease I don’t want to get rid of, an intoxication I crave,” said Edvard Munch. So how is the art world now? Edvard is dead and he does not know. Aaron does not know either and perhaps he never will. But Aaron identifies with Edvard’s metaphors, and maybe that’s all that matters. Maybe sending ripples of chatter through the eating area is the price one pays for getting a drink at the bar.
A Premier Book From an Independent Publisher in Long Island New York
Writing for the Absent Reader is the very first book to be published by John’s Motorcycle Storage and Rare Book Disposal, the newest independent publisher in New York City.
Where to get a Copy of Writing for the Absent Reader
Those living outside the Kingston area can purchase ebook and paperback copies of Writing for the Absent Reader here. If you are living in or around Kingston, you can now get paperback copies of Writing for the Absent Reader at Novel Idea: Kingston’s Independent Bookstore.