Happy to have a new story called “First Days on Father Island,” which is almost as autobiographical as it sounds, in the latest Little Star.

Little Star 6


Little Star #6 (2015) is here! Already on shelves at Greenlight and Book Culture, on the way to St. Mark’s, McNally Jackson, Porter Square, Powell’s, more. Order here littlestarjournal.com/issues

A darkish ditty in upcoming issue of GIGANTIC


Thanks to editors Lincoln Michel and James Yeh, I’ve a short piece called “Normcore” in the upcoming Gigantic. The issue is available now for pre-order for a mere eight bucks — includes shipping!

Launch party on 10/18: https://www.facebook.com/events/1473548316257710

Our forthcoming issue complicating and, in some cases, demolishing understandings of comedy and jokes features new or newly translated fiction by Franz KafkaJincy Willett,Amelia GrayDaniil KharmsOsama Alomar, and Mike Topp; a special fold-out “New Gigantic-er” poster featuring cartoons by Roz ChastCarolita JohnsonDrew DernavichMichael Crawford, and Corey Pandolph; interviews with comic book artist Gabrielle Bell and writer J. Robert Lennon; the latest installment of Joe Wenderoth’s Seizure State; the winner of our first-ever Penny-a-Word contest; illustrations by Andrew Bulger; and much, much more—all in a unique, uniquely Gigantic“grab-bag” format designed by Erin Grey West
Arriving at bookstores in October, pre-order available now for the special price of $8 (save $4! including shipping and handling).

An excerpt from THE STRANGERS in Secret Behavior

Great thanks to Keith Newton for including an excerpt from my novel THE STRANGERS in the 2nd issue of Secret Behavior magazine.

The second issue of Secret Behavior will launch at the New York Art Book Fair at PS1 in Queens. If you are local or visiting NYC please stop by our booth, the fair opens Thurs evening Sept 25th, and it is all day Fri 26th- Sun 28th.

Featured in Secret Behavior Issue 02: Kostas Anagnopoulos, Tom Andes, Morton Bartlett, Lisa Blair, James Brett, Nicola Canavan, John Clang, Victor Cobo, Marilène Coolens & Lisa De Boeck, Jonathan Durbin, TR Ericsson, Farrah Field, Jason Glasser, Nicolai Howalt, Susanna Howe, Rachel Kash, Brian Kenny, Erik Kessels, Eugene Lim, Malerie Marder, Myriam Meloni, Keith Newton, Jason Porter, Jana Romanova, Amanda Ross Ho, Juliana Sabinson, Mathias Svalina, André Viking, Jack Webb, Eric White

Order the issue here: http://secretbehavior.bigcartel.com/product/secret-behavior-issue-02-family


Some new fiction in YOUR IMPOSSIBLE VOICE

Thanks to Stephen Beachy, I’m happy to have some fiction in the latest edition of YOUR IMPOSSIBLE VOICE, a digital magazine. Maybe you’d like to download its elegant bits and read them on one of your exobrains? … My story takes place in a karaoke bar and has in it a rambling about life in Queens that goes:

I leaned toward Gus and hoping not to appear rude by talking during our friend’s performance (but she wasn’t paying any attention to us; when she was singing Muriel was truly transported to a different dimension), I said, “The thing about this corridor of our city – from Woodside through Elmhurst through Corona through Flushing and on to Bayside and beyond – an incredible swath, at times like the Kowloon Walled City in its density and inventive bricolage, and superseding it in terms of the diversity of its immigrant populations, is that this often praised mixing shoulder to shoulder of people from every dominion on the planet breeds a respectful and intimate but insuperable separation, which is made all the more vexing due to proximity. In the morning one can see the parents of – among many others – Sikh children and Uruguayan children, Romanian children and Cameroonian children, Bhutanese children and Basque children all dropping off their kids at the school. One perhaps can’t imagine such a sight without experiencing it first-hand. The place is awash in color of both traditional costumes and very au courant if off-the-rack business casual; the Cantonese-inflected English mixes with scrubbed Midwestern and Punjabi lilt as I hear striver family heads discussing playdates and swapping recipes. Nowhere on any other place on earth does this prismatic confluence occur. And yet for its singularity, everyone is rather ho hum about the spectacle. The smoothing of all that difference into capitalist civility is remarkably unremarked upon. Oh the omnipotent digestive juices of the market’s gut – it eats it all! And maybe the non-remarking is but one other aspect of the digestive process. (How quietly it eats!) So it’s true that one, in a moment of weakness, could think it a commercial for American utopia and racial harmony: the interlocking of all these communities, the painless and insidious assimilation, the simultaneous proud and painful resistance to that assimilation, the flow of first to second to third and fourth generations, the seemingly unifying and seemingly ubiquitous materialist ambitions. And yet like the city itself the complex is unknowable, one’s neighbors are so close yet so far away, we each find ourselves alone and lonely, and the functioning diversity miracle itself is only another demonstration of how far short the most miraculous will fall in the futile ambition to save ourselves from ourselves.”

I paused as Muriel finished her second song and the room again convulsed in raucous applause. She waited with great showmanship before beginning her concluding number: “Immigrant Song” by Led Zeppelin. On hearing the first notes the crowd instantly went wild.

I had to shout in order to be heard but leaned closer to Gus and yelled, “And yet at other times – when I trundle down its street and avenues, weary from my day’s labors or the prospect of my nightly ones, when I am going to the greengrocer for bell peppers and onion to make another basic bachelor’s supper, when I stop to hear the busker’s tambourine for just a minute before shyly dropping in a few coins, when I order some sweetly marinated meat over rice from the food trucks, when I’m in line to buy Band-Aids and deodorant at the pharmacy – at these times I look around and see all my harried neighbors doing the same, the gimpy and spry, ill- and sweet-tempered, nebbish and vampy, and yes it’s then I do believe in some unity of purpose, despite the chaotic provenances of Diaspora City, and I see the essential program provided to all is not to acquire or win but rather is just to exist – and to avoid pain – and we are not at all making the world and are therefore not at all responsible, but in the moment have only been given it, the prospect and circumstance of the hour, and we are forced to navigate this place, each of us, as best we can.

“Then I think: Fellows! Sisters! Cousins!

“But,” I concluded “the feelings then, while not marked so much by loneliness, are drenched with a resembling error, namely self-pity.”


The fall issue of Your Impossible Voice is here with incredible new work from Aaron Shurin, Eugene Lim, Kathleen Jesme, Mary Carroll-Hackett, Fernando Vallejo (translated by Laia García Sánchez and Robert Jackson), Kyle Hemmings, Daniel J. Pizappi, Steve Weiner, Michael Shou-Yung Shum, Rachel Nagelberg, Marianne Villanueva, Nicholas Alexander Hayes, Gerard Sarnat, Nels Hanson, Laura Bernstein-Machlay, Kent Monroe, Mara Naselli, and Nicola Waldron with cover art by Padma Prasad.

“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.


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