Archive for 2012

July 29th, 2012

Colin Winnette reading from Revelation!

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Colin Winnette, Mutable author, recently informed us that he got engaged in Prague and to celebrate we’re putting the first chapter of his remarkable novel, Revelation, up for audio download. Download here or listen below!


July 15th, 2012

The Diary of a Garish Amateur

Happy Hour
John Wilmes

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I’m playing piano at a bar. It’s just 7 PM on a summer Tuesday in Chicago, and I’m sort of drunk in my sky-blue tie.

 

I don’t really know how to play piano, in any sort of academic sense, but I know that if you’re hitting, exclusively, the white keys, and that if you’ve got a sense of rhythm, and that if you’ve got anything like a ‘feel’ that then — then you can’t really go too wrong. This much has gotten me dates with girls I didn’t really like, at this bar in the near-northwest side of Chicago; this much is keeping me company with myself in this bar, with two old men and a blaring TV screen.

 

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July 9th, 2012

Letter from the Editor

How the New Sincerity led me to Yangshuo, China
GBoyer

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In his groundbreaking book, *Russian Thinkers*, Isaiah Berlin distinguishes between 19th Century French attitudes towards their writers and the attitudes of their 19th Century Russian counterparts. The French, he claims, considered the life of the writer to be extraneous, that the style and the skill of the author was paramount, while for Russians an author and his life were indistinguishable. I have always sided with the Russians in this regard. The writer is not just a detached craftsman or stylist, but a person writing about people. Do I believe in this person or not? In the world as this person depicts it? Is this author a false prophet or a true prophet? This is how I think of writing. How very Old Testament of me. Which brings us to the New Sincerity.

 

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June 26th, 2012

The The Magazine

Interview with Colin Winnette in The The
Brian Chappell

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(Author Colin Winnette, whose novel, Revelation, was put out by Mutable last Fall, is interviewed below by The The’s Brian Chappell.)

 

Brian: What authors and styles have shaped you?

 

Colin: Influence is a tricky thing to talk about. I can say that Ben Marcus’s work was extremely important to me. It still is, but at one point it totally saved me. Or, reinvigorated me. I was finishing up undergrad and I was in love with writers like Beckett, Proust, Chekhov, Joyce, Kafka, these iconic figures who did what they were doing so masterfully that there seemed nowhere to go at all after that. That was also the result of my age at the time and what being in school can do to you. I didn’t realize it then, but I had a pretty narrow vision of what it meant to be a writer and what one could do with fiction. But then I picked up Age of Wire and String and Notable American Women and I was just totally blown away. It was an entirely different approach to working with and examining language than I had ever encountered before. Those books led me to Gertrude Stein and William Gaddis and all of these authors who were breaking language apart, yes, but also reclaiming it, making it do new and fascinating things. And, I mean, they had been doing this for a long time and in different ways, and here was Ben Marcus doing it still in his own way and just killing it. So I suddenly felt very free again. It’s interesting the difference between grad school and undergrad. In undergrad I was constantly being told what good writing looked like. It looks like Carver. It looks like Chekhov. It looks like Pynchon (and indeed it does!). It looks like Austen. Etc. Workshops were little help because they were often the same kind of thing: I think you should do this, or I think this should happen, etc. Initially I lacked the confidence to assert myself. Then, when I gained a little confidence, I asserted myself by just ignoring pretty much everybody and only listening to the 2% I thought made sense or seemed to come from a good place. I started to tune a lot out. So I left undergrad fed-up, but with a lot of energy. I wrote and worked and traveled and didn’t write and two years later I went to grad school with a much different attitude. I used that time to write as much as possible. I listened to people and read as much as I could, but took the whole thing less…personally, I guess…than before. I took it seriously, but I knew the conversations we were having in class were often selfish in that we were all interested in enhancing our work by discussing the work of others. Helping one another wasn’t exactly the point, although we certainly did help one another from time to time. And I should say I think all that’s great. The two most important things grad school gave me were time and a sense of purpose. I felt encouraged to work and I had the hours in the day to do it. Or if I didn’t have them, I made them because I knew my time was limited. I taught myself how to make time to write. I was writing a lot on the train and in bed my first year. I wouldn’t let myself sleep until I had done a certain amount of work. I’m not sure I would have had that kind of discipline at first if I weren’t in a program. Now, it comes much more naturally. I had to learn how to kick my own ass.

 

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June 26th, 2012

The Diary of a Garish Amateur

Richman in the Park with Heartache
John Wilmes

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Millenium Park, Chicago, in the bandshell seats. Jonathan Richman on stage.

 

Nearby a small boy is flailing his arms and legs almost imperceptibly, with his Hummingbird energy; I believe he is attempting flotation, and my roommate, next to me on my right, is talking about how important it is to observe these young kids dancing this way, while they’re still willing to do it. The little boy’s smile is the biggest thing in sight but his father isn’t amused. ‘When he’s thirteen, he’s not going to want to dance that way anymore. When he’s twenty-three, he’ll have to get *really drunk* to do it.’

 

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April 18th, 2012

The Open End

Revelation Reviewed at The Open End
herocious

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For some reason three is a good number. There’s a balance to three, a symmetry that seems to establish an axis. Three is triptych, three is trinity. With a title like REVELATION I feel like trinity is the more applicable to Colin Winnette’s first novel.

 

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March 28th, 2012

Interview of Colin Winnette in Monkey Bicycle

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(Recently, Monkey Bicycle interviewed Mutable author Colin Winnette about Revelation, his writing process, pressures, and hopes for the future. This interview can be found below.)

 

MB: What is your religious background?

 

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January 19th, 2012

MUT017

Twilight at the Lady Jane Grey
College for Little Ladies

An Original Radio Play | 52 Episodes | $ Free Download |

 

The year is 1903 and the Lady Jane Grey College for Little Ladies is closed for the summer session, the windows empty, gargoyles and latin script cut into the arched doorways, the buildings now abandoned but for a few who have no other home, a handful of teachers, administrators, and orphans.

 

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