“Freudenberger may very well be a genuine talent, but she’s being marketed as a doe-eyed dear, meant to seduce book-buyers (who are, after all, not necessarily book-readers) with her come-hither(-and-shell-out-twenty-five-bucks-for-my-book)-looks. Literati shouldn’t loathe her for that — but they should worry about the state of an industry forced to emphasise such pathetic superficialities.” The Babu’s hoping to see a Complete Essay on the subject of marketing gone mad from the Complete Review one of these days.
Writer Shelley Jackson invites participants in a new work entitled “Skin.” Each participant must agree to have one word of the story tattooed upon his or her body. The text will be published nowhere else, and the author will not permit it to be summarized, quoted, described, set to music, or adapted for film, theater, television or any other medium. The full text will be known only to participants, who may, but need not choose to establish communication with one another. In the event that insufficiant participants come forward to complete the first and only edition of the story, the incomplete version will be considered definitive. If no participants come forward, this call itself is the work.
The Babu would volunteer but for three niggling caveats: a) he has an aversion to being stuck with sharp objects b) what if his Word turned out to be “the”? Or, worse still, “ineffable”? c) Or, and this is his personal nightmare scenario, misspelled? He’d hate to go through this brief literary career being “insufficiant”.
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