Letters

Native American Reservation on the Moon #1
Yoshio Itagaki, Native American Reservation on the Moon #1, 2001, C-print on Fuji-flex, 30 × 40". Courtesy of Jack the Pelican Presents, New York.

Dear Editors,

I read Keith Gessen’s lovely remembrance of our friend Patrick Giles [www.nplusonemag.com/giles.html]. I was late in getting the news since Patrick and I had a falling out a few years back and I assumed we would have more time to put things right. You mention at the end of the article “I wonder what he wrote for Homo Xtra?” A question which is only too funny to answer.

He and I often shared bylines on the “Summer Reading List” and short book reviews. I remember him double-talking “Joe,” the then editor of HX, into believing that Tina-tweaking gay party boys would LOVE to know more about the hardcover box set of Robert Musil’s The Man Without Qualities, Susan Sontag’s The Volcano Lover, and whatever opera compendium came out that spring. We would then rip apart a few gay genre novels and hand it in with a straight face. This is the stuff we got away with when Patrick did the talking. The odd part was, since we both worked at A Different Light bookstore in Chelsea, we would actually see customers coming in to buy Sontag or Musil while clutching our article. Patrick knew what he was talking about. His knowledge was infectious. I’m glad he passed it on to me. I will miss him so much.

—Otto Coca

More from Issue 4

Issue 4 Reconstruction

Like Oedipus, we flout the warning, and we’ll act surprised, even outraged, when we find out what we’ve done.

Issue 4 Reconstruction

Every now and then he looked up to ask what Evo was saying, since at his seventy-two years of age, Hugo Blanco is nearly deaf.

Issue 4 Reconstruction

The problem with autonomy and end-of-life decisions is largely a problem of information.

Issue 4 Reconstruction

It is not possible to be a German. If it were, hardly anyone would like to be one.

Issue 4 Reconstruction

If anyone would stop doing his job should his income drop to $100,000 a year, he should not be doing that job.

Issue 4 Reconstruction
My Life and Times in American Journalism
Issue 4 Reconstruction
Short Story & Novel
Issue 4 Reconstruction

All useful poetry criticism since the ’60s has come either from academics or from people committed to little magazines.

Issue 4 Reconstruction

Literature is only an art. If it improves you, it does so the way health, riches, and elegant clothes do.

Issue 4 Reconstruction

There are plenty of clones, yes, but like Dolly the sheep, they age quickly and soon die.

Issue 4 Reconstruction

In the age of BookScan, only an unpublished writer is allowed to keep his dignity.

Issue 4 Reconstruction

It is in an aroused consciousness that the solace and excitement of literature are to be found.

Issue 4 Reconstruction

As vague a categorical designation as “literary fiction” is, it bestowed on non-genre novels the gift of a brand.

Issue 4 Reconstruction

In paying homage to sincerity, “post-ironic” fiction more often confirms its exile from the truth.

Issue 4 Reconstruction

Our generation seems far too aware that reading is safe and fun, that literature is spectacle.

Issue 4 Reconstruction
Why Repeat These Sad Things?
Issue 4 Reconstruction
The Mystery Guest
Issue 4 Reconstruction
Afternoon of the Sex Children
Issue 4 Reconstruction
Two Stories
Issue 4 Reconstruction
Melodramatic Installations
Issue 4 Reconstruction
Three Stories
Issue 4 Reconstruction
The Joy of Edge Tools
Issue 4 Reconstruction

You, dear reader, are also supposed to be a clone among clones. And really, who’d be the wiser?

Issue 4 Reconstruction

Never trust a man who insists that he is sincere. How does Vollmann intend to be helpful, to save a life, to benefit someone?

More by this Author

Issue 27 Deep End

“Not our President”? Not our Party either.

Issue 13 Machine Politics

Any translation by nature opens itself to an eternity of learned kibitzing.

Issue 2 Happiness

As soon as you hear, “We’re all writers here, what’s to disagree about?” you know we’re sunk, intellectually.

Issue 7 Correction

Foreign writers are like candidates for President: it helps to have been a prisoner of war or at least poor.

Issue 9 Bad Money

“We” should be getting gay marriage, without believing marriage is the final basis for a good society.

Issue 12 Conversion Experience

We would chat while they thought we were working; they would grow old and die; we would inherit the earth and chat forever.