The Definition of Non-Tangential by Austin Islam and you, the friend


                Austin Islam’s work deals with friendship. Without his friends this wouldn’t be possible, literally. The book is a series of well-planned out and articulate screen shots. Over the course of years and decades Austin has honed this craft. By now his selection is exquisite. For what is culture to a person besides that which interests them? Here Austin shows that the consumption of culture can create new forms through the power of Flarf, screenshots, and errors. 

                It begins with beans, that magical fruit. From there it goes onto the trials and tribulations of childhood. Kids have it hard, being all small and stupid. Adults mess with kids all the time. Poor kids have no way of defending themselves against these large intellectual bullies. So they take it out on society, trying to make the world a better place and writing essays about it. 

                Hell is Satanic and so is Flarf. When one uses Flarf one uses the language of the Devil. All the Devil wants to do is utter nonsense and have fun. That’s why he has that big pit of fire in the center of the Earth. Hell logically leads to Facebook chat. Clearly Austin is big into connecting with people on a deep meaningful personal level. Daniel Alexander explains how to make various kinds of pizza using only the power of moustaches. One can find that kind of pizza in Detroit, in Pittsburg, and across this great land of America. 

                Moms appear on screen. Some people think moms are mythical creatures, living only in real life, never showing themselves on the internet. Of course this is untrue somebody needs to check up on their kids’ Facebook profiles and it certainly isn’t going to be Dad. Austin is clearly into one of the moms in the photo. Bloggers would vote for Austin Islam. Thanks to bloggers America is experiencing economic growth. Content farms are always hiring new content farm hands. 

                Beach Sloth appears in Twitter feeds, in Facebook Fan Pages, really anywhere on the internet. Look above these words. See that name? That is the owner of this moderately sized web domain. Get into it. Shelby Stevens attacks Mitt Romney’s detractors. Of course Austin Islam has a mature response of ‘At least I don’t do lines of coke off Hannity’s peen’. Trolling Republicans is an official sport. What makes it fun is due to the extreme age and lack of humor of most online Republicans they’ll earnestly believe anything. 

                 Rap games are necessary. Somebody’s got to rap someday. Here Drew Boston goes into the depths of Paul Ryan’s personal beliefs. They are clearly nuanced. Paul Ryan’s views veer from ‘Kill Yourself’ to ‘Go Kill Yourself’. Yep this is political season indeed. Drew Boston is no fan of Paul Ryan, much to Paul Ryan’s chagrin. 

                “That was the best salad” is a line of dialogue according to Cassandra Gillig, of King Crab fame. Many barely know what salads are. People are out there, smart people, who do not know what croutons are. America has a problem. America needs more salads. What America also needs: more Marie Calloways! Here Austin tags Marie to let her know he’s thinking about her. Everybody in alt lit thinks about Marie Calloway. For her benefit this post will be tagged with ‘Marie Calloway’. Hope she finds it okay. 

                Beauty is only Facebook deep. It takes a whole social media presence to really know somebody. Check out Austin. He is the chillest of the bros.

The Definition of Non-Tangential by Austin Islam and you, the friend

                Austin Islam’s work deals with friendship. Without his friends this wouldn’t be possible, literally. The book is a series of well-planned out and articulate screen shots. Over the course of years and decades Austin has honed this craft. By now his selection is exquisite. For what is culture to a person besides that which interests them? Here Austin shows that the consumption of culture can create new forms through the power of Flarf, screenshots, and errors. 

                It begins with beans, that magical fruit. From there it goes onto the trials and tribulations of childhood. Kids have it hard, being all small and stupid. Adults mess with kids all the time. Poor kids have no way of defending themselves against these large intellectual bullies. So they take it out on society, trying to make the world a better place and writing essays about it. 

                Hell is Satanic and so is Flarf. When one uses Flarf one uses the language of the Devil. All the Devil wants to do is utter nonsense and have fun. That’s why he has that big pit of fire in the center of the Earth. Hell logically leads to Facebook chat. Clearly Austin is big into connecting with people on a deep meaningful personal level. Daniel Alexander explains how to make various kinds of pizza using only the power of moustaches. One can find that kind of pizza in Detroit, in Pittsburg, and across this great land of America. 

                Moms appear on screen. Some people think moms are mythical creatures, living only in real life, never showing themselves on the internet. Of course this is untrue somebody needs to check up on their kids’ Facebook profiles and it certainly isn’t going to be Dad. Austin is clearly into one of the moms in the photo. Bloggers would vote for Austin Islam. Thanks to bloggers America is experiencing economic growth. Content farms are always hiring new content farm hands. 

                Beach Sloth appears in Twitter feeds, in Facebook Fan Pages, really anywhere on the internet. Look above these words. See that name? That is the owner of this moderately sized web domain. Get into it. Shelby Stevens attacks Mitt Romney’s detractors. Of course Austin Islam has a mature response of ‘At least I don’t do lines of coke off Hannity’s peen’. Trolling Republicans is an official sport. What makes it fun is due to the extreme age and lack of humor of most online Republicans they’ll earnestly believe anything. 

                 Rap games are necessary. Somebody’s got to rap someday. Here Drew Boston goes into the depths of Paul Ryan’s personal beliefs. They are clearly nuanced. Paul Ryan’s views veer from ‘Kill Yourself’ to ‘Go Kill Yourself’. Yep this is political season indeed. Drew Boston is no fan of Paul Ryan, much to Paul Ryan’s chagrin. 

                “That was the best salad” is a line of dialogue according to Cassandra Gillig, of King Crab fame. Many barely know what salads are. People are out there, smart people, who do not know what croutons are. America has a problem. America needs more salads. What America also needs: more Marie Calloways! Here Austin tags Marie to let her know he’s thinking about her. Everybody in alt lit thinks about Marie Calloway. For her benefit this post will be tagged with ‘Marie Calloway’. Hope she finds it okay. 

                Beauty is only Facebook deep. It takes a whole social media presence to really know somebody. Check out Austin. He is the chillest of the bros.

liefplus
liefplus:

IRL FEST is New Year’s Eve in Brooklyn!!! there will be (1) a Pop Serial reading featuring Steve Roggenbuck, Crispin Best, Mira Gonzalez, Guillaume Morissette, Spencer Madsen, Ashley Opheim, Heiko Julien, and Maggie Lee, hosted by Stephen Tully Dierks; (2) an IRL presentation of the Alt Lit Gossip Awards, hosted by Steve Roggenbuck; (3) an IRL presentation of the Beachys, hosted by Steve Roggenbuck; (4) HUGGING. Check out the Facebook event for IRL FEST

                The end of the world requires an immense celebration. Alt lit heard the cry of thousands of people across the world and said ‘Yes we will be together for New Year’s Eve, on the edge of a new dawn’. People from across the globe and the Tri-State area will come together for something very grand: the second annual Alt Lit Gossip Awards and second annual ‘Beachies’. People are beyond excited; they don’t know where to begin. For these awards ceremonies, whose prizes pay nothing like alt lit in general, bring great things to light. Some of alt lit works so danged hard too. It is about time it gets celebrated in whatever way is possible. 

                Many wanted the alt lit gossip awards (or ‘alties’) to be hosted in Chicago, alt lit’s previous capital. While there are plenty of outstanding alt lit writers in Chicago (more than can be counted on one, nay two hands) there is a major problem with Chicago. Chicago blows hence the title ‘the windy city’. This isn’t anybody’s fault. Geography makes it impossible to host such a thing in Chicago. Chicago has been exporting writers. Recently one Stephen Tully Dierks of the ‘Dierks-life’ has migrated over to the beautiful shores of the East Coast, living permanently in New York City. What will Stephen Tully Dierks do in New York City? Well with the help of Stephen Tully Dierks New York City will consume just a little more alcohol and have one more hip twenty-something to call its own. Plus earlier this year New York City gained the ravishing beauty of one Marie Calloway, pickle firmly in mouth (this is not a metaphor, Marie really love pickles apparently). 

                Hence these events celebrate the beauty of more and more writers coming over to the Eastern Shore of the United States. These celebrations bring countable numbers of alt lit writers many of whom are meeting for the first time. For part of the joy of alt lit is bringing people together. On the internet everyone is the same. In that way the internet is the great equalizer. The internet makes everyone equal. It is up to the user to strive for greatness, to give up on real life in exchange for the lucrative internet life. What these awards do is award those willing to improve the internet for better and alter. 

                Who will win an alt lit gossip award? It is hard to say. So many categories, so many contestants, so little time. The Beachies know everybody is a winner in their own special way but only a certain amount of people can be nominated. Who will win a Beachie? The world may never know, at least for a week and a half.

liefplus:

IRL FEST is New Year’s Eve in Brooklyn!!! there will be (1) a Pop Serial reading featuring Steve Roggenbuck, Crispin Best, Mira Gonzalez, Guillaume Morissette, Spencer Madsen, Ashley Opheim, Heiko Julien, and Maggie Lee, hosted by Stephen Tully Dierks; (2) an IRL presentation of the Alt Lit Gossip Awards, hosted by Steve Roggenbuck; (3) an IRL presentation of the Beachys, hosted by Steve Roggenbuck; (4) HUGGING. Check out the Facebook event for IRL FEST

                The end of the world requires an immense celebration. Alt lit heard the cry of thousands of people across the world and said ‘Yes we will be together for New Year’s Eve, on the edge of a new dawn’. People from across the globe and the Tri-State area will come together for something very grand: the second annual Alt Lit Gossip Awards and second annual ‘Beachies’. People are beyond excited; they don’t know where to begin. For these awards ceremonies, whose prizes pay nothing like alt lit in general, bring great things to light. Some of alt lit works so danged hard too. It is about time it gets celebrated in whatever way is possible. 

                Many wanted the alt lit gossip awards (or ‘alties’) to be hosted in Chicago, alt lit’s previous capital. While there are plenty of outstanding alt lit writers in Chicago (more than can be counted on one, nay two hands) there is a major problem with Chicago. Chicago blows hence the title ‘the windy city’. This isn’t anybody’s fault. Geography makes it impossible to host such a thing in Chicago. Chicago has been exporting writers. Recently one Stephen Tully Dierks of the ‘Dierks-life’ has migrated over to the beautiful shores of the East Coast, living permanently in New York City. What will Stephen Tully Dierks do in New York City? Well with the help of Stephen Tully Dierks New York City will consume just a little more alcohol and have one more hip twenty-something to call its own. Plus earlier this year New York City gained the ravishing beauty of one Marie Calloway, pickle firmly in mouth (this is not a metaphor, Marie really love pickles apparently). 

                Hence these events celebrate the beauty of more and more writers coming over to the Eastern Shore of the United States. These celebrations bring countable numbers of alt lit writers many of whom are meeting for the first time. For part of the joy of alt lit is bringing people together. On the internet everyone is the same. In that way the internet is the great equalizer. The internet makes everyone equal. It is up to the user to strive for greatness, to give up on real life in exchange for the lucrative internet life. What these awards do is award those willing to improve the internet for better and alter. 

                Who will win an alt lit gossip award? It is hard to say. So many categories, so many contestants, so little time. The Beachies know everybody is a winner in their own special way but only a certain amount of people can be nominated. Who will win a Beachie? The world may never know, at least for a week and a half.

Why Marie Calloway Rocks!

Marie Calloway rocks. No two ways about it, she rocks the Casbah. Since the release of ‘Adrien Brody’ she’s become popular. A few people (who am I kidding) a lot of people have criticized her in ways that I find particularly unflattering, dishonest, and downright mean. Originally I wasn’t going to write about Marie, she’s an internet friend of mine and a supporter of mine. I figured ‘Oh, people will get around to her point of view; the internet shit-storm (caused mostly by double standards, sexism, etc.) will subside’. I thought of people’s initial reaction to Megan Boyle’s work “Everyone I’ve Had Sex With” as a similar comparison and the ‘shit-storm’ that came immediately after it. What came of that was Megan’s book, which ended up doing really well, with haters either silenced or outvoted. I wanted that to happen with Marie as I left on hiatus. I figured by the time I came back from the most remote corner of Earth people would gain some common sense and decency.  
 
                That hasn’t happened. That’s why I’m writing this piece. I support Marie Calloway’s writing and am offended that people use thinly veiled criticism of her life as a way to insult her work. Really they shouldn’t be criticizing Marie at all, at least not in such vicious and counterproductive ways. When I initially read the comments on HTML Giant, I said aloud to myself ‘I wonder how many of these people bothered reading Marie’s story, or do they just dislike the idea behind the story’. I don’t know the answer to this question, I hope everyone who criticizes her has at the very least read her work, but that’s probably not the case. 15,000 words is a lot to read and I know to criticize takes less effort than to create. But to do this justice to some degree requires starting at the beginning, to her Thought Catalog articles. 

                Thought Catalog is a wonderful, lovely place where people contribute stellar material. There are some commenters who fight amongst themselves. It is a place kind enough to have hosted my writing before (see here). It gave Marie her first outlet for writing starting in April of last year. I’ll summarize them briefly here:

                ‘Losing Your Virginity’ is the best summary for the article. It is also the title. It is an extremely descriptive version of the experience, told from a female point of view, a refreshing take from ‘then we boned and it was hot.’  This should have alerted people to Marie’s writing abilities, particularly the ending of the piece. Going through the comments gives only an inkling of what kind of Puritan Rage Marie would later encounter with ‘Adrien Brody’. A few of them are point out her refusal to capitalize words. Others penned such lazy comments as ‘she just wants attention, blah blah blah’ and other extraordinarily useful critiques. The comments were swipes at her age, gender, and socio-economic status.

                ‘How to Make Money in London’ is the second piece. It deals with the sex economy and the power dynamic between Marie and a London Banker. At least that’s what I got from it. People got pissed off by the ‘banker listens to the Smiths’ line. I mean, I’m a music nerd. No doubt about it. But I can’t understand why people got infuriated by the Smiths line so much. A few of them even suggested ‘do the math’ since they are unable to do basic addition and subtraction. Weirdly, even though this was about sex work, people seemed less upset than they did about Marie losing her virginity. Guess since it was prostitution and not outright ‘I must enjoy this sex’ people relax. Commenters feel threatened when faced with a different story from what TV, literature, culture, etc. has told them about sex. Prostitution though is treated in a darker light, hence why people did not berate her as much for this article. A simpler explanation exists: people read her first piece and already had some idea what to expect from her re: subject material, style and tone. 

                ‘Adrien Brody’: this is the big one, the one that tore bored, apathetic bloggers apart, no mean feat. Read it here. Much of the criticism was pathetic. One critic penned something with the truly Earth shattering, brilliant fucking insight of ‘What would your Father say?’ which somehow became an entire blog post with likes and stuff. Honestly, who cares what her father says? In what way does that change the content of the story, what the story covered, the relationship dynamic between Adrien and Marie, or really anything? Then there are the ‘when you’re older you will realize how stupid you are’ critics. They claim she’ll regret everything she did as a young writer. I’m kind of shocked that so-called ‘smart people’ people who went into an MFA program, paid for the education, and write full time could be so emotionally stupid. I don’t get it. Why are so many alt lit readers such prudes? The ‘Marie’ character in the story is not the exact same person who wrote it, there are differences and changes that Marie has explained over and over again, only to hear people use the same critiques over and over again. The mean-spirited destructive criticism Marie Calloway has received makes me sad. I told a close friend of mine about it and they suggested we go together to see Marie read live when she comes to New York in February. 

                What is ‘Adrien Brody’ about though? It is about a young woman (our heroine Marie) going to New York and sleeping with an older (smarter?) man. I liked a lot of parts of this story. I liked how he uses parts of her conversation in his actual IRL articles (hence evidence that she’s a good writer). See the Forever 21 conversation for evidence. Hearing how he is a bit of a phony when it comes to reading is pretty funny. Books he never read are just one of many details. By the end of the story I felt for the character Marie. Parts of the dialogue were quite charming, touching my slothy heart. 


"So why did you break up?"

"Because I didn’t love him."

"I guess that is important…"


                I enjoyed that snippet and other pieces. If I was to cut and paste every part I enjoyed it would be enormous. I liked the Hipster Runoff discussion, the Tao Lin discussion, and a lot of other little details. Every little piece is brought together right down to Adrien’s borough of residence Queens. To that I say ‘Hell Yeah’ because Queens never gets any love in any story. 

                Since the story came out Marie has been busy. She’s interview Momus, a musician she’s fond of, and she’ll be doing some fantastic readings in the Big Apple, New York City. Hopefully I can make those given time, space, buses, money, and so many other variables. 

                Marie also runs probably one of the most kickass Tumblrs I’ve seen in quite some time. Go here to witness pure joy, pure happiness, and pure Mountain Mew. <3 Mew Marie Cattoway.

Why Marie Calloway Rocks!

Marie Calloway rocks. No two ways about it, she rocks the Casbah. Since the release of ‘Adrien Brody’ she’s become popular. A few people (who am I kidding) a lot of people have criticized her in ways that I find particularly unflattering, dishonest, and downright mean. Originally I wasn’t going to write about Marie, she’s an internet friend of mine and a supporter of mine. I figured ‘Oh, people will get around to her point of view; the internet shit-storm (caused mostly by double standards, sexism, etc.) will subside’. I thought of people’s initial reaction to Megan Boyle’s work “Everyone I’ve Had Sex With” as a similar comparison and the ‘shit-storm’ that came immediately after it. What came of that was Megan’s book, which ended up doing really well, with haters either silenced or outvoted. I wanted that to happen with Marie as I left on hiatus. I figured by the time I came back from the most remote corner of Earth people would gain some common sense and decency.  

 

                That hasn’t happened. That’s why I’m writing this piece. I support Marie Calloway’s writing and am offended that people use thinly veiled criticism of her life as a way to insult her work. Really they shouldn’t be criticizing Marie at all, at least not in such vicious and counterproductive ways. When I initially read the comments on HTML Giant, I said aloud to myself ‘I wonder how many of these people bothered reading Marie’s story, or do they just dislike the idea behind the story’. I don’t know the answer to this question, I hope everyone who criticizes her has at the very least read her work, but that’s probably not the case. 15,000 words is a lot to read and I know to criticize takes less effort than to create. But to do this justice to some degree requires starting at the beginning, to her Thought Catalog articles. 

                Thought Catalog is a wonderful, lovely place where people contribute stellar material. There are some commenters who fight amongst themselves. It is a place kind enough to have hosted my writing before (see here). It gave Marie her first outlet for writing starting in April of last year. I’ll summarize them briefly here:

                Losing Your Virginity’ is the best summary for the article. It is also the title. It is an extremely descriptive version of the experience, told from a female point of view, a refreshing take from ‘then we boned and it was hot.’  This should have alerted people to Marie’s writing abilities, particularly the ending of the piece. Going through the comments gives only an inkling of what kind of Puritan Rage Marie would later encounter with ‘Adrien Brody’. A few of them are point out her refusal to capitalize words. Others penned such lazy comments as ‘she just wants attention, blah blah blah’ and other extraordinarily useful critiques. The comments were swipes at her age, gender, and socio-economic status.

                How to Make Money in London’ is the second piece. It deals with the sex economy and the power dynamic between Marie and a London Banker. At least that’s what I got from it. People got pissed off by the ‘banker listens to the Smiths’ line. I mean, I’m a music nerd. No doubt about it. But I can’t understand why people got infuriated by the Smiths line so much. A few of them even suggested ‘do the math’ since they are unable to do basic addition and subtraction. Weirdly, even though this was about sex work, people seemed less upset than they did about Marie losing her virginity. Guess since it was prostitution and not outright ‘I must enjoy this sex’ people relax. Commenters feel threatened when faced with a different story from what TV, literature, culture, etc. has told them about sex. Prostitution though is treated in a darker light, hence why people did not berate her as much for this article. A simpler explanation exists: people read her first piece and already had some idea what to expect from her re: subject material, style and tone. 

                Adrien Brody’: this is the big one, the one that tore bored, apathetic bloggers apart, no mean feat. Read it here. Much of the criticism was pathetic. One critic penned something with the truly Earth shattering, brilliant fucking insight of ‘What would your Father say?’ which somehow became an entire blog post with likes and stuff. Honestly, who cares what her father says? In what way does that change the content of the story, what the story covered, the relationship dynamic between Adrien and Marie, or really anything? Then there are the ‘when you’re older you will realize how stupid you are’ critics. They claim she’ll regret everything she did as a young writer. I’m kind of shocked that so-called ‘smart people’ people who went into an MFA program, paid for the education, and write full time could be so emotionally stupid. I don’t get it. Why are so many alt lit readers such prudes? The ‘Marie’ character in the story is not the exact same person who wrote it, there are differences and changes that Marie has explained over and over again, only to hear people use the same critiques over and over again. The mean-spirited destructive criticism Marie Calloway has received makes me sad. I told a close friend of mine about it and they suggested we go together to see Marie read live when she comes to New York in February. 

                What is ‘Adrien Brody’ about though? It is about a young woman (our heroine Marie) going to New York and sleeping with an older (smarter?) man. I liked a lot of parts of this story. I liked how he uses parts of her conversation in his actual IRL articles (hence evidence that she’s a good writer). See the Forever 21 conversation for evidence. Hearing how he is a bit of a phony when it comes to reading is pretty funny. Books he never read are just one of many details. By the end of the story I felt for the character Marie. Parts of the dialogue were quite charming, touching my slothy heart. 

"So why did you break up?"

"Because I didn’t love him."

"I guess that is important…"

                I enjoyed that snippet and other pieces. If I was to cut and paste every part I enjoyed it would be enormous. I liked the Hipster Runoff discussion, the Tao Lin discussion, and a lot of other little details. Every little piece is brought together right down to Adrien’s borough of residence Queens. To that I say ‘Hell Yeah’ because Queens never gets any love in any story. 

                Since the story came out Marie has been busy. She’s interview Momus, a musician she’s fond of, and she’ll be doing some fantastic readings in the Big Apple, New York City. Hopefully I can make those given time, space, buses, money, and so many other variables. 

                Marie also runs probably one of the most kickass Tumblrs I’ve seen in quite some time. Go here to witness pure joy, pure happiness, and pure Mountain Mew. <3 Mew Marie Cattoway.