Wednesday, February 11, 2009
repetition patterns / virtual book tour
this monday i posted about books constructed out of overlapping short stories: Daniel Kehlmann's novel-in-9-short-stories "Ruhm", and j.a. tyler's upcoming novel/novella-in-stories-or-something, "In Love With A Ghost".
and now i just came across the next book with overlapping short stories: Ben Tanzer's book "Repetition Patterns", defined as a "story cycle":
"..and I suddenly saw exactly what Tanzer was going for here, of how exactly these stories actually all fit together as a giant remarkable jigsaw puzzle, and how they touch on much bigger issues than their childhood pop-culture fascinations might let on at first. As I made my way through this entire collection for the first time, I realized that .. Ben was creating a very realistic-feeling yet fictional town for all these stories to take place, literally jumping back and forth in time over a good twenty-year period, with it never exactly clear whether our narrator is the same person in every story, but definitely with some shared friends between one story and the next, and definitely with shared locations whose fates we can watch progress non-linearly over the decades. It's no coincidence, after all, that existing fans of these stories have referred to them before as Sherwood Andersonesque, and in fact you can see this manuscript in many ways as Ben's attempt at creating his very own Winesburg, Ohio." - official publisher statement
which then made me go to Ohio, and find this: "Winsberg, Ohio by Sherwood Anderson - A critically acclaimed work of fiction by the American author Sherwood Anderson, the book, published in 1919, is a collection of related short stories, which could be loosely defined as a novel. The stories are centered on the protagonist George Willard and the fictional inhabitants of the town of Winesburg, Ohio."
it seems to be the week of coming across 80-year old modern constructions.
some other interesting aspects of Repetition Patterns:
- it kick-starts with a virtual tour (that's how i came across the book)
- it's released as an electronic book, on a pay-what-you-want basis.
P.S: ah, and the joys of online logic: i just downloaded the book. here's a clue: after purchasing via paypal, press the "return to the donations coordinator" -button. it will take you forward to the download page.