Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Conversion disorder

The Quarterly Conversation has published a Harry Mathews symposium, to which I've contributed a piece on discovering HM's first three novels at (where else?) Book Ark.* I can't wait to read the other pieces. My fellow World's Least Popular Book Clubber (and New-York Ghost font designer), Dan Visel, delves into Mathews' first book, The Conversions; the novelist (and EP portrait-taker) Laird Hunt writes about My Life in CIA; Believer reviews editor and Oulipo explicator Daniel Levin Becker looks at Selected Declarations of Dependence (one of the few HM books I don't have—I think I read it all while standing at St. Mark's). Plus John Beer on HM's poetry, and AD Jameson and Jeremy M. Davies offering two takes on Cigarettes.

Here is an old picture of the cover of the book in question:

I've noticed an error in my piece: I've transposed the addresses of the store and my apartment!

*I mentioned Book Ark and Mathews in the Days of Yore interview, and wrote about Book Ark for an essay in the Asian American Literary Review. In 2000, I named Book Ark the best used bookstore in New York for the PTSNBN. Here is the (sadly defunct) store's website. I've probably talked about Mathews elsewhere; one place was for "n.b.," which...I'm not really sure what it was, but I wrote a review of the Oulipo Compendium, co-edited by HM.


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