Liquid Ink

The official website of Gint Aras, Finalist 2016 CWA Book Award


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How to kill the middle class and ruin the environment 

In our attempts to make sense of how anyone would have voted for the president (when the answer is obvious), we keep losing sight of what’s happening. 

The following bills have been introduced:

1. HR 861 Terminate the Environmental Protection Agency

2. HR 610 To distribute Federal funds for elementary and secondary education in the form of vouchers for eligible students and to repeal a certain rule relating to nutrition standards in schools.

3. HR 899 Terminate the Department of Education

4. HJR 69 Providing for congressional disapproval under chapter 8 of title 5, United States Code, of the final rule of the Department of the Interior relating to “Non-Subsistence Take of Wildlife, and Public Participation and Closure Procedures, on National Wildlife Refuges in Alaska”. 

5. HR 370 Repeal Affordable Care Act

6. HR 785 National Right to Work (this attacks collective bargaining, ending unions)

7. HR 147 Criminalizing Abortion (“Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act” or PRENDA)

8. HR 808 Sanctions against Iran

The assault on unions and public schools all at once is driven by nothing more complex than basic human greed. At institutions of learning nationwide, educators are perceived as liabilities, a waste of money that could go to an administrator. If they could get rid of the teachers union and all faculty, they could teach classes with software, and a pile of money would appear for whomever was left.

How are any of these proposals acting in the best interest of the middle class that “feels forgotten”? How is the pollution of our planet, and acceleration towards an extinction event, in the interest of the wealthiest Americans, or of college administrators, or of tea party activists, or of Nazis? Don’t you think it’s weird that the 1%, tea party “patriots”, gun addicts, skinheads, Nazis and champions of Jean Raspail now form a political coalition? 

The swamp was drained to reveal monsters who had only been stuck in the muck. Now they get to crawl up on shore. 


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Reading in NYC, Why There Are Words

I’ll be reading from The Fugue at Why There are Words this Sunday evening, March 5th. Event details are included at this link. Yes, I’ll have books for sale, discounted at $16, and I’ll be available to sign them.

Please note that this reading requires tickets. You can purchase advance discounted tickets here at Brown Bag.

I haven’t read in New York since last spring, so I’m excited to romp around again. I’m sure there will be drinks afterwards. I hope to see you.

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Coleson Whitehead on delusion

I must admit that I’ve yet to read The Underground Railroad, although it’s high on my list of books to get to soon. This quote gets to something I’ve been thinking about for a long time, for longer than we’ve had a fascist leading our country, a man most everyone in America disapproves of, except for white men.

And America, too, is a delusion, the grandest one of all. The white race believes–believes with all its heart–that it is their right to take the land. To kill Indians. Make war. Enslave their brothers. This nation shouldn’t exist, if there is any justice in the world, for its foundations are murder, theft, and cruelty. Yet here we are.

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Photo of Coleson Whitehead from Wikipedia


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Cole Lavalais on Summer of the Cicadas

I had the pleasure of meeting Cole Lavalais, a fellow Chicagoan, down in Memphis during the Mid-South Book Festival of 2016. Her responses to panel questions really struck me, and I became interested in her work.

Below is an excerpt from her The Toast interview, in which she discusses black spaces, magical realism in black women’s fiction, and mental illness. I recommend reading the whole thing and getting Cole’s Book, Summer of the Cicadas.

There’s a thing about mental health. It almost seems as if it’s the last frontier of where we don’t feel bad about teasing and making fun of folks that are going through mental illness. We still get memes of people or videos — “oh, look at this person! She’s crazy!” When we see someone unraveling, as a society, it seems like it’s still okay for us to poke fun, in ways we would never do if the person had cancer or some other disease. What I really hoped to do is to start that conversation so you can truly understand that this is truly a mental illness. Just because it can’t be cut away and you can’t get a shot and it’s fixed, it’s not that easy, it doesn’t make it any less.

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Photo of Cole Lavalais from her website.


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Readings this week in Minneapolis, Racine

I’ve got a busy week in front of me, with readings scheduled at the Err Artist Collective in Minneapolis and Bonk! in Racine, WI, Wednesday February 22 and Saturday February 25th, respectively.

If you’re happening across this website and live in either the Minneapolis or Racine area, I hope you’ll come out to hear me read. I’ll be reading from The Fugue and talking about the artist’s role in a fascist state.