“Ursula’s Curse” now up at Dazed


Thanks to Dennis Cooper, my story “Ursula’s Curse” (originally published in The Coming Envelope #9) is up at Dazed Digital as part of their summer long #dazedstates series on American fiction. There’s also an interview with DC and great work by Joyelle McSweeney, Darby Larson, and Frank Hinton.

flying over venice li wei



Dennis Cooper, the punk pioneer of the written word and Visionaries collaborator, brings his transgressive spirit to Dazed today. There’s an interview with the man himself – “America’s most dangerous writer” – as well as his curated selection of other writers who go against the grain: including Eugene LimFrank Hinton and Joyelle McSweeney with her Oscar Pistorius opera (no, really).

Eugene Lim. Just take it from us when we say: remember that name. The writer’s got countless contributions to anthologies and chapbooks, as well as two novels – Fog & Car and last year’s acclaimed The Strangers – under his belt. What links everything penned by the Brooklynite, however, is their sense of adventure: and not the kind of adventure, as his short story for Dazed would inititally (incorrectly) suggest, that connotes a rollicking science-fiction adventure to the stars and back. It’s best, with Lim, to instead expect the unexpected. Read our online exclusive, “Ursula’s Curse” – taken from the novel that Lim is currently working on – to discover a loosely poetic prose that seems to come from another time altogether. And, in true Cooper tradition, that’s looking forward – not back.

Dennis Cooper: “Eugene Lim is amazing because he’s really adventurous with form and style in this way that I really like, and it’s so refined. It’s so hard to break apart fiction and do something really unusual with it, and to do it so gracefully. Eugene seems to be able to use form in a really exciting way, but he can also just continually make it beautiful. I mean, it’s very poetic; it’s just lovely. He’s a very good writer. I think he’s really special.”

Read the story here, illustrated with fantastic non-photoshopped flight by artist Li Wei.

Some fiction in the latest issue of THE COMING ENVELOPE

Just received thanks to Malcolm Sutton the latest issue of THE COMING ENVELOPE. I’ve work in it along with Kilby Smith-McGregor, S. D. Chrostowska, Thomas Phillips and Jonathan Pappo. My bit, called “Ursula’s Curse,” is an excerpt of a novel-in-slow-progress  in which intergalactic arena combat is imminent and a painter writes the following on her works:

This painting cannot be bought or sold for more than the total wages of three months full-time employment at the minimum wage as determined by the state of New York. If this painting should be sold for greater than this amount, may both the buyer and seller be considered shit by the entire world and by themselves, and may they spend the afterlife sad and angry and hungry and hopeless as poverty makes.

I’m reading with Tom Cho at the Asian American Writers’ Workshop on April 17th at 7PM



with Tom Cho, Eugene Lim

Thursday, April 17, 2014 7:00pm
Asian American Writers’ Workshop
112 W 27th Street, 6th floor
New York, NY

Meet a grandma named Bruce, an occasional Godzilla, and Whitney Houston’s bodyguard/lover.  Tom Cho’s Look Who’s Morphing was published to acclaim in Australia and shortlisted for multiple literary awards—including the 2010 Commonwealth Writers’ Prize for Best First Book—and has been studied at universities in Canada, Australia, UK, Switzerland and Japan. It is finally being released in the U.S. Eugene Lim will join him on stage to read from his book The Strangers, an experimental novel on twins, relationships, and film, which author Lydia Davis called “so precise and accurate to real life that it is (fantastically) convincing.

Paul Vangelisti reviews THE STRANGERS at Your Impossible Voice


“For this reader, much of the romance of American fiction seems faded until one reads a novel like The Strangers. As with some of the more interesting 20th century sentence-makers, Gertrude Stein, Djuna Barnes, Tomasso Landolfi, Robert Walser, or, closer to home, Gilbert Sorrentino and Roberto Bolaño, right from the start of The Strangers, Lim’s characters run away from the writer, get lost, and hide within the writing.”

Read the review here.

THE STRANGERS makes SPD’s bestseller list

THE STRANGERS breaks into the fiction bestseller list at SPD. Why not buy a few copies to paper the den? It makes the perfect gift for that guy or gal who has some things.




by distant association i once knew a woman from a mildly war-torn place who in the decades before 9/11 dabbled in terrorism (as maybe an american youth dabbles with heroin)  and who would romanticize it by defining it as the ‘disruption of everyday life.’ which, as a definition, is one that disguises such a tactic’s usual impotence and belies its callous destruction. less revolutionary (perhaps; probably), art seems a better fit for the definition — the disruption of everyday life.

hanshan, from whose name hoevenaar partly takes his book’s title, was a chan buddhist monk and poet who rigorously lived and made his art through a paradoxically opposed truism formulated by his rough contemporary nanquan puyuan: ‘everyday mind is the way.’

(the other half of hoevenaar’s title comes from robert smithson, who had his own definition:  You must travel at random, like the first Mayans; you risk getting lost in the thickets, but that is the only way to make art.)

a creator of expectation defiances in series, jeremy hoevenaar’s poetry holds, line to line and moment to moment, countless bait-and-switches, feints, legerdemain and outright magic. but while a few of these moves one may have seen before, his poetry also pulses and maintains a complex and relatively pure integrity, i.e. stays open. or, as anselm berrigan states it in the afterword: “This is not a wholly unknown strategy for handling time in poetry, but Hoevenaar is never smug about what he’s doing, and what he’s doing — tonally and rhetorically — is recording a succession of language hits without giving up his condition as open bundle of nerve endings not completely sure how to be built for this world.”

dug it intensely.

excerpts here. purchase it from the publisher here.


Reading 1/22/2014 with Amanda Davidson at Berl’s


berls poetry shop

Wednesday, January 22, 2014 at 7PM

Berl’s Brooklyn Poetry Shop

126A Front Street

Please join us for the inaugural reading in our new human brain confetti series, VANJA AND THE PANTHER.

The reading will feature the frabjous AMANDA DAVIDSON & supercallifragilistic EUGENE LIM!

Amanda Davidson writes, teaches, and makes performances. She is the author of Apprenticeship (New Herring Press, 2013), a fiction chapbook. Writing, reviews, and author interviews have appeared in the Encyclopedia Project, eMusic, the City Lights Bookstore Blog, and elsewhere. She is at work on a performance novel about the mystic Swedenborg. Visit www.partedinthemiddle.wordpress.com.

Eugene Lim is founder and managing editor of Ellipsis Press. His fiction has appeared in Fence, The Denver Quarterly, EXPLORINGfictions, The Brooklyn Rail and elsewhere. He is the author of the novels Fog & Car (2008, Ellipsis Press) and The Strangers (brand new, Black Square Editions). He works as a librarian in a high school and lives in Queens, NY. www.eugenelim.com.

Come early! Stay late! Hark to the bridge as it groans its metal music above! Support writers! Fictive movements! Make your life better! Hear everything!




The Strangers on DC’s 2013 favorite list

Every year I check out Dennis Cooper’s best-of list. Today, tiny bits of my brain combustified when I saw THE STRANGERS was mentioned there. Good company too. Check it out:

FOG & CAR named a fave read for 2013

Over at The Quarterly Conversation the dashing poet/translator/knot maker Ian Dreiblatt puts up his favorite reads of 2013. Here’s what he writes about Fog & Car:


A lot of steam is wasted in literary criticism on parsing the opposition of “experimental” writing to “realism.” Fog And Car is profoundly both, and each in its best sense. It’s experimental in how the book, willful as water and superbly attentive, creates its own unfamiliar shape in response to the minute exigencies of language. At the same time, it produces a deep realism in its faithfulness to the feeling of being a person. He has the tempo, breath, & tonal sense of a great musician. I’m dying to read his second, The Strangers, just out from Black Square Editions.

Read the whole list here: http://conversationalreading.com/tqc-favorite-reads-of-2013-ian-dreiblatt/

Pick up a copy of Fog & Car from SPD or Amazon.



Book Notes to THE STRANGERS at largehearted boy

Thanks to David Gutowski at largeheartedboy.com, here’s some musical companionship for my novel THE STRANGERS.

Why not pick up a baker’s dozen of the book to plant in libraries and bus stops? …It should be available on Amazon in a few days, but please consider buying it from SPD or the publisher’s store at Hyperallergic.


 In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book.

Eugene Lim’s The Strangers is a fascinating novel rich in language, both fascinating and surprising.

Stream a playlist of these songs at Spotify.

Read and listen to the whole playlist here:



Read and listen to the whole playlist here:

PW has a nice review of THE STRANGERS


“In his second novel, Lim (Fog & Car) weaves a fantastical tapestry of the bizarre lives of various sets of twins slipping seamlessly into and out of one another’s awareness…These layered narratives take on a critical mass with each iteration and repetition, as the novel examines the very act of storytelling… in gorgeous language alternately athletic or sprawling, Lim’s whip-smart novel offers revisionist histories that keep readers hungry for the heart of a narrative, for echoes that hold truths.

Read the entire review here.

Interview at Vol. 1 Brooklyn

The Impossible, The Parallel, The Intimate: A Conversation with Eugene Lim

By  On  · Eugene Lim

Eugene Lim’s novels tread the line between the hypnotically familiar and the surreptitiously terrifying. His latest novel, The Strangers, follows multiple sets of twins through landscapes alternately recognizable and surreal. Underground film scenes, stand-up comedy, shipborne communities, and totalitarian states all appear, and yet the entire work remains even-tempered and cohesive. As the publisher of Ellipsis Press, Lim has ushered books from the likes of Norman Lock and Eugene Marten into the world. As an admirer of both The Strangers and his earlier novel Fog & Car, I was curious to learn more about Lim’s process, and so we checked in earlier this month via email…

Read the interview here: http://www.vol1brooklyn.com/2013/10/23/the-impossible-the-parallel-the-intimate-a-conversation-with-eugene-lim/

I’ll be reading at AAWW’s Page Turner fest this Saturday


Details for this free block party slash kid-friendly book fest here: http://pageturnerfest.org/

Saturday, October 5, 2013
Roulette (509 Atlantic Ave  New York, NY 11217) and the YWCA in Downtown Brooklyn.

Eugene LimSergio De La Pava, Ira Silverberg, Miguel Syjuco


12PM – 1PM | Roulette Downstairs Gallery

Three writers read metafictional, adventurous books whose prose is as experimental and fractured as their main characters’ identities. Brooklyn Public Defender Sergio de la Pava originally published his “unapologetically maximalist” novel A Naked Singularity (Slate), a novel seemingly too ambitious and eclectic for mainstream publishing. The book was picked up by the University of Chicago, won a PEN Literary Award, and earned comparisons to Gaddis, David Foster Wallace, and Melville. The 678-page hysterical tome follows a public defender who’s the child of Colombian immigrants, as he takes readers through a tour of crime and courts, immigrant families and urban blight. What would happen if you threw 150 years of the Philippines into the blender with Oscar Wao and Tristram Shandy? Possibly something like Miguel Syjuco’s Man Asian Award-winning novel Illustrado, which combines poetry, reviews, interviews, polemics, unreliable narration, and a main character whose name is—surprise, surprise—Miguel Syjuco. Eugene Lim’s layered, pixelated novel The Strangerscollects a “literary cabinet of curiosities,” in the words of The Paris Review, including a young man vandalizing the posters of a paranoid nation, the search for the perfect T-shirt, and the missing person’s bureau of a giant cruise ship. Moderated by Ira Silverberg, former Editor-in-Chief of Grove Atlantic and NEA Literature Director.

Reading on Tues 9/17/13 at Bookthug

Along with Colin Winnette, Karolina Waclawiak, Jen Gann and D. Foy, I’ll be reading on Tuesday 9/17 as part of an event put together by the dapper folks at Vol. 1 Brooklyn. The reading will take place at Book Thug Nation (100 North 3rd Street, Brooklyn, NY) and begin at 7:00 p.m. Facebook RSVP here.

Two paragraphs at 2paragraphs.com


First two paragraphs of The Strangers, which begin, “At night when I can’t sleep and at noon in the streets I don’t know who I am and could be anybody.





two sad, beautiful novellas. a subtle lyricism that reminded sometimes of early handke, sometimes of the edgy desperation portrayed so well by elena ferrante. at yet other times what was brought to mind — even though honigmann here risks sentiment much more — was sebald’s sacred, dry handling of the stories of refugees and immigrants. what stands out however is an emotional and graceful prose that embodies outsider and diaspora life, its various defeats and small, bittersweet triumphs.

A LOVE MADE OUT OF NOTHING tells a story similar to honigmann’s biography. here, an adult daughter of a german jewish father and a bulgarian jewish mother self-exiles herself from east berlin to a lonely paris.
one of the more incredible bits is when she discovers her father’s diary entries from 1946, when he returns to germany. an almost casual description of the situation he then found himself in: “Someone asks us if we’re Italian. They no longer remember what Jews look like” (71)

the second novella ZOHARA’S JOURNEY is more straight-forward, in a way, and becomes, by its end, a semi-adventure story (before a final collapse). another great portrait, it speaks of a sephardic jewish refugee from algeria living in france with her six kids — a woman cruelly trapped by fate and her crooked, confidence-man husband.

i hope there’s more of her soon in english.

pick it up from the publisher or at your library or at an indie bookstore near you.


why i’m not a futurist

over the past weekend i participated on a panel about the future of avant-garde literary publishing with some very smart people within and without the publishing biz (namely: Ian DreiblattHolladay PenickSarah Leonard, and Peter Dimock).

i tried to argue (i think as a big-data subversion method) (is such possible?) that in the face of content glut, the rise of review culture could be harnessed to create a better literary culture:

If one aspect of the technological revolution is an increasingly networked citizenry (even if that network is a commercial one like Facebook or Twitter), and another aspect of the new cybernetics is the rise of review culture seen in places like Goodreads and Yelp, then one helpful response is to call upon our intelligentsia to more purposefully participate in the crowd-sourced curating and gatekeeping. That is, to write reviews (“substantial” ones in places like The New Inquiry or Rain Taxi or even mini-reviews in places like Goodreads), not so much for the reviews themselves (which, to understate it, may vary in quality) or the (rather minuscule) publicity such reviews might at first generate, but for the inculcation (in academics, their students, in writers) of the habit of critical participation in contemporary literary culture.

We have been given the infrastructure, whether we like it or not, by these new networks to create a culture. If we invest ourselves and our time, this will create the culture.

[Read the rest here.]


other interesting things said and heard in that room:

no one eats off of a gift economy.

corporations are no longer paying for banner ads because they are ineffectual. instead (and terrifyingly) they are paying for “sponsored content” where a blogger endorses a product in her own voice.

it’s hard to monetize transcendence. 

target may know youre preggers before you do.

avant-garde publishing only exists (only ever existed) in the interstices/margins/as parasites upon larger corporate publishing.

ODES & fragments by Alan Davies




the latest book from ellipsis press is by alan davies. more info plus an excerpt here.

ODES & fragments by Alan Davies presents a substantial collection of recent poetry, including odes and fragments as well as modes above and beyond. Ranging in length from a few words to twenty-plus pages, these poems vary widely, exploring love and fellowship, war and adversity, beginnings and endings (and the ongoing), instances of thought, feelings that flutter then fail, moments of apprehension (both senses), and our confrontation with the irretrievable.


Praise for Alan Davies

The kind of skill with handling language that can’t be rushed or faked, and that I only hear in the work of writers who have really practiced for a long time.
—Craig Dworkin

Alan Davies’s poems have such great sound and are open and situated and fearless in their response to what happens internally and in the big often ugly outside. A startling writer and very precise on whatever path he sets for himself.
—Carla Harryman

Davies hasn’t been publishing a lot in recent years & to see this much work at once, this much first-rate work, is completely bracing. He hasn’t lost a step & is every bit as uncompromising as ever. This actually can make Davies a difficult read at times, but it never is complexity just for the sake of showing off. He continues to be the Diogenes of the New York langpo scene.
—Ron Silliman

Davies’s belief in radical self-reflexivity has led him, in the course of his writing career, from a virtually opaque formalism to a continuity of text and life-world that is anything but aesthetic construction.
—Barrett Watten

[Davies] has suggested to me ways of thinking about connective possibility, ways through which ‘no one is absent anymore’…. how writing and reading matters, not just for its comforts or its eloquent aesthetics, but for the way it can take us through comfort and aesthetics into relations with others, for the way it can model thinking.
— Juliana Spahr

ALAN DAVIES IS THE ONLY LANGUAGE POET WHO HAS EVER HAD SEX. The rest of them are virgins, which, I know, is weird — I don’t know how to explain it, it’s just a historical fact. But because of this, Davies’s work stands out as addressing an aspect of life, of reality, and of vitality that other writers might not have had the experience to write about.
Steve Zultanski 

read an excerpt here.

buy it directly from ellipsis press or through spd or amazon.

Review of THE STRANGERS in the Review of Contemporary Fiction

Tags: ,

RCF32 3

Norman Lock writes about The Strangers in the latest issue of the Review of Contemporary Fiction:


To place the storytelling act at the center of a novel is a risky strategy: the stories must fascinate. Lim’s stories do (except those few that he deliberately effaces as if to give a graphic representation of self-erasure). They have the exoticism, emotional authenticity, and intellectual depth to ensure that the reader will be enthralled. Lim’s knowledge of economic theory, political science, art history and practice, the minutiae and mechanisms of businesses large and small is sweeping. His verbal constructions exhibit lyrical and playful strains, indignation and sensuality, and a genuinely hip, idiomatic flair. Lim’s ambition to relate “grand narratives”—to tessellate them within a mysterious, comprehensive verbal construction and, in so doing, to recreate in his fictional universe the entire world and its archetypical figures—makes his novel an uncommon artifact. The Strangers in its complex self-referential, multi-layered structure, anecdotal mass, and restless inventiveness demands and rewards more than one reading.

Read the whole review here.


VAULT by david rose



convincing and moving portrayals of quiet, selfless valor told with a great textured, muscular writing:

“Towns flattened for miles, those civilians unable to flee living as troglodytes in cellars half-flooded with rain and sewage, making hopscotch forays to find crusts or cabbage leaves in the rubbled gutters” (p. 33).

this novel on the surface is occupied primarily with two physical activities: being a sniper (during the second world war) and racing bicycles. but rose’s beautifully rendered description of these two (at times sinister) occupations make us touch our animal side — and by that we’re uncannily opened up to profound moral and philosophical quandaries.



here’s an interview revealing, among other interesting bits, a sebald-related origin story.

pick it up at the library or through the publisher.

« Previous PageNext Page »
(c) 2017 . . . | powered by WordPress with Barecity
  • RSS RSS Feed
  • Atom