by carl wilson

The Family That Links Together, Stays Together


I am delighted to announce that you now can order Mrs. Zoilus's new novel Ticknor from her publisher Anansi, and other fine Canadian booksellers. No pressure, but honestly you won't regret it. And note her snappy brand-new-as-of-today webzone!

Sheila's launch party, for those of you in the T-dot, is March 24 at 7 pm at Stones' Place on Queen W. in Parkdale. Everybody's invited. Reading, signing, drinking and music by our friends at the Global Pop Conspiracy.

Speaking of literature, JD Considine has had good stuff on his newish blog, Resonance, the past week, about music in the work of Haruki Murakami. (At least I know the first post is good - I've averted my eyes from the second because I haven't yet read Kafka on the Shore.) I'd take issue with Considine's introductory point that "novels tend not to have soundtracks. Not only does background music not play as we read, but there’s often little or no mention of music in the prose." A fair enough assertion, perhaps, in the past, but popular music is playing a bigger and bigger role in contemporary fiction, especially but not exclusively in American fiction. Rock- and post-rock-generation writers such as Rick Moody, Jonathan Lethem, Nick Hornby of course, Dennis Cooper, Neil Gaiman, Salman Rushdie, Thomas McGuane and some others I can't think of right now - they're all music geeks who compulsively drop pop references in their work, with varying degrees of finesse. (I touched on this development last summer in my feature on "lit-rock.") I'd say Murakami is more akin to than unlike the rest here, but he does display one of the finer ears. He pays generally closer attention to the aural dimension in general than many writers, not just music - witness the sound-image of the Wind-up Bird itself, and plot points that turn on hearing, the use of oral history in his Aum Shinrikyo and earthquake writings etc. All objections aside, I'd love to read more by Considine on the subject - indeed, on Japanese literary-musical connections in general, as he clearly has some special science to drop there.

Finally: The Toronto live guide for March has been super-updated. With two-star shows (in a two-star system) happening every two or three days, I think I can stop complaining that it's too quiet: Tonight alone, there's Santa Cruz w/ the Inbreds and Fox the Boombox, Dynamite Soul with Jens Lekman and Republic of Safety, the Radio Kabul Afghani music concert, Guh at the Tranzac, etc. etc. Get out of bed, there'll be no more napping, 'cause you've landed in a place where anything can happen...!!!

The Writ | Posted by zoilus on Friday, March 11 at 2:20 PM | Linking Posts | Comments (4)



Thanks for the kind words, Carl and Chris. I will now go off and blush a bit.

Posted by JD Considine on March 12, 2005 7:50 PM



just finished kafka on the shore this morning, then read considine's blog on music in the book and in other haruki books. wow, he's so bang-on; i always knew murakami used music well and extensively, but it never drew attention to itself because the role it played was so natural. murakami's references to his characters' music tastes, and the way music figures in the background in certain scenes, or more notably, in characters' heads at key moments, never takes you out of the whole book experience. his use of music is so close to mimicking the way it plays out in everyday life is so right, it's partly why, despite his outlandish plots, he feels like the real-est writer at it today.

Posted by chris frey on March 12, 2005 11:42 AM



Hey! Congratulations! As a drunk southerner I used to know used to say, Right Fuckin' Truckin' On Ten Four Good Buddy!

Posted by John S. on March 12, 2005 2:55 AM



Have you seen those new penguin canada editions? They stole Sheila's design:,,0_0141018879,00.html?sym=EXC#

Posted by misha on March 11, 2005 7:30 PM




Zoilus by Carl Wilson