Thursday, March 12, 2009

Author Q&A with Kane X. Faucher, "Tales Pinned on a Complete Ass: Journey to Romania"

Kane X. Faucher is author of the humorous book, "Tales Pinned on a Complete Ass: Journey to Romania."
What's your book about?
The book is a humorous semi-autobiographical account of my brief travels through Romania. I suppose the style adopts the perspective of Hunter Thompson mixed with P.J. O'Rourke. The somewhat satirical poke at ethnographic and travel writing does belie my actual admiration and respect for Romanian culture, and as well marks a significant departure from my previous books which are mostly bleak, dystopic, impenetrable experiments for a very niche literary audience that can actually sit through the entirety of Joyce's Ulysses and "get it". Instead, I decided to push into print that other mode or register of my writing practice that seems to have garnered a great deal of mirthful attention; namely, my absurdist streak where I go about talking about connecting myself to electric jellyfish or dispersing crowds with air horns - that sort of thing.
Why do you call it "semi-autobiographical"?
Fictionalizing oneself, even under the most seemingly objective reportage, is an inevitability. How we represent ourselves is always incomplete - a vignette of projected ego. In the case of this work, the events did not always happen as I report them, but are rather embellished or nuanced for narrative humor effect. The trick of satire is to employ the occasional hyperbole or absurdist chain of narrative sequence.
Where can we find your work?
My publisher gave me dim indications about placing them in various stores around the Pennsylvania area, but mostly the storefront is a virtual one:, the great churning mill where lazy marketers shill to lazy buyers.
How did you get your start in writing?
I began, like so many, writing bad high school poetry, moving on to fiction, and developed a conceptually top-heavy practice that involved a critical engagement with polemic narrative, themes borrowed from poststructuralism, as well as an incorporated development of authors I have always held dear such as Jorge Luis Borges, Louis-Ferdinand Celine, Samuel Beckett, William H. Gass et al.
What does your writing routine look like?
That has changed drastically over the years. A decade ago, I was a night owl and would haunt the pubs and bars, writing feverishly in notebooks and packing away jug after jug of beer. At times, I'd work through to the early morning, keeping myself on my sharp pins with the aid of copious amounts of coffee, good vodka, and endless cigarettes. Cliche? Perhaps. I hardly stick around long enough to worry about such things. Nowadays, I'm up near dawn, suffusing myself with coffee, cigarettes, and eventually (once the midday line is breached) beer. I used to do all my work in pubs, cafes, and bars since I needed the white noise and the intervention upon the senses of those random snatches of conversation that briefly arrest one's attention and diverts the flow of written discourse. These days, I work primarily at home, on my MacBook, surrounded by my security blanket: a wall of books, piles of paper, thousands of pages of scribbled notes, an overflowing ashtray, dirty coffee mugs, empty beer bottles, and my feverish tapping punctuating the rhythm of the music I have on - which is generally ambient experimental stuff like Zoviet France or Boards of Canada. As pedestrian as it might sound, I think marriage has made me a better writer in many ways. Gone may be the days of wild and surreal nights of bizarro adventurism and uncanny encounters, but my focus and production seems to excel in times of stability and love. I no longer worry about next month's rent, for example, and so I am free to indulge my writing passion. More importantly, my wife keeps me honest, and I respect her opinion above anyone else's when it comes to what I write.
What are you working on next?
That's a rather large question since I split my time between academic and literary matters, sometimes blurring the line between the two. I have several modes of writing making my practice somewhat versatile and eclectic: I can move from Gonzo humour to literary fiction to journalistic copy to aesthetic reportage to poetry to satire to jargon-laden academic articles in a matter of seconds. I completed my Jonkil Calembour dystopic cycle with the release of Jonkil Dies by BlazeVOX last September, but I am working on a novel that resurrects his image in a plot that involves the corporatization of the modern university and the devastation of the humanities. I am also working on another book entitled Crackle which would be akin to a Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels narrative concerning, of all things, that neglected medium known as radio. There is also a few Nietzchean-style aphorism books, a few poetry volumes, an experimental post-code poetry collaborative project with Matina Stamatakis and John Moore Williams, and another few humour books. At the moment, I am in process with a book-mystery manuscript involving an infinite library with lots of medieval ciphering, as well as a book of Borgesian-style short stories. I hope to use the book-mystery book as the launching text for its sequel that I have been tooling with for over twelve years concerning a fiendish doctor who uses art to excite a mass unconscious desire for atrocity. Academically, I hope to rewrite my metaphysical book on metastasis, as well as a collaborative reappraisal of Louis-Ferdinand Celine's use of narrative.
What made you decide to write this novel?
Overwhelming egotism. Actually, I merely wanted to give voice to that absurd streak within me while at the same time poking fun at ethnography. It was a good way of justifying my rather random decision to go to Romania.
What challenges did you face with this book?
Publishing delays, mostly. Putting the book together from a series of scribbled notes was rather easy.
What advice would you have for other writers/would-be writers?
Don't bother with pricey workshops, seminars, or "how to get published" books. Stop worrying about how others dictate things like craft and form. Find your voice or multiple voices, and start projecting. Of course, publish often and keep actively and currently engaged in what has happened and what is happening in writing. Experiment freely in writing without sabotaging yourself with premature thoughts on its publishable merit. Not all experiments succeed, and not everything you churn out has to be stellar. Learn to embrace those ebbs and flows of creativity, for it is the natural process of development.
Favorite Links:
Tales Pinned on a Complete Ass: Journey to Romania, and other books by Kane X. Faucher:
Kane X. Faucher's webpage:
Past interview of the author:
EDITOR'S NOTE: J. Louise Larson, blogmistress for The Writing Porch, interviews published authors. To be considered, email her at jackielarsonwrites (at) gmail (dot) com. Larson's work has been published in a number of newspapers and magazines, including the Dallas Morning News and Entrepreneur Magazine. She is the managing editor of the Ennis Journal and a contributor at the Waxahachie Daily Light, and she has received the top award for series writing in Texas, the Texas APME, as well as a silver from the Parenting Publications of America. She co-authored a nonfiction career guide for FabJob Publishing in 2006, and is seeking representation for her new novel, 'At High Tide.'

1 comment:

Ted_Head said...

It's good to see Faucher tackle humour in his writing since he seems to have a knack for it. He does so much serious work that I always wondered if he'd ever put some of his absurdity into print. I've seen him at a public performance once, and his delivery for the bizarre and the hilarious is something crazy to behold.