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Derek McCormack and Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore
December 3, 2020 @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm PST
A Semiotexte Books Double Bill with two razor-sharp writers of fiction
celebrating the the release of two new novels
Castle Faggot – by Derek McCormack –
A dark satire about an amusement park more deranged than anything Disney could imagine: a playland for gay men called Faggotland.
The Freezer Door – by Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore
A meditation on the trauma and possibility of searching for connection in a world that enforces bland norms of gender, sexual, and social conformity.
This is a virtual event that will be hosted by City Lights on the Zoom platform. You will need access to a computer or other device that is capable of accessing the internet. If you have not used Zoom before, you may consider referencing Getting Started with Zoom.
Event is free, but registration is required.
(CLICK HERE) to register. Link to be posted soon.
(Click Here) to purchase book. Link to be posted soon.
about CASTLE FAGGOT
Castle Faggot is Derek McCormack’s darkest and most delicious book yet, a satire of sugary cereals and Saturday morning cartoons set in an amusement park more deranged than anything Disney dreamed up. At the heart of the park is Faggotland, a playland for gay men, and Castle Faggot, the darkest dark ride in the world. Home to a cartoon Dracula called Count Choc-o-log, the castle is decorated with the corpses of gays—some were killed, some killed themselves, all ended up as décor.
The book includes a map of Faggotland, a photobook of the castle, the instructions for a castle-shaped dollhouse, and the novelization of a TV puppet show about Count Choc-o-log and his friends—reminiscent of the classic stop-motion special Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, but even gayer and more grotesque. As scatological as Sade but with a Hanna-Barbera vibe, Castle Faggot transmutes McCormack’s love of the lurid and the childlike, of funhouses and sickhouses, into something furiously funny: as Edmund White says, “the mystery of objects, the lyricism of neglected lives, the menace and nostalgia of the past—these are all ingredients in this weird and beautiful parallel universe.”
what has been said about CASTLE FAGGOT
“In Derek McCormack’s home province, farm boys with growing pains enjoy a little-known meal called bed-supper—a hearty bowl of sweet breakfast cereal enjoyed as a midnight snack. Here McCormack has composed a peculiarly salacious bed-supper, where the long secret sweet-tooth of the Marquis de Sade glints as it sinks into the dirtiest of dishes. This useful book will more than stay your appetite until breakfast—Castle Faggot is also a manual of redecoration, a musical, a puppet show, a theory of cosmetics, a work of poetics, and a glorious celebration of the French decadence.” – Lisa Robertson, author of The Baudelaire Fractal
about THE FREEZER DOOR
When you turn the music off, and suddenly you feel an unbearable sadness, that means turn the music back on, right? When you still feel the sadness, even with the music, that means there’s something wrong with this music. Sometimes I feel like sex without context isn’t sex at all. And sometimes I feel like sex without context is what sex should always be.—The Freezer Door
The Freezer Door records the ebb and flow of desire in daily life. Crossing through loneliness in search of communal pleasure in Seattle, Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore exposes the failure and persistence of queer dreams, the hypocritical allure of gay male sexual culture, and the stranglehold of the suburban imagination over city life.
Ferocious and tender, The Freezer Door offers a complex meditation on the trauma and possibility of searching for connection in a world that relentlessly enforces bland norms of gender, sexual, and social conformity while claiming to celebrate diversity.
What has been said about THE FREEZER DOOR
“I really love Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore’s The Freezer Door. In a happy paradox common to great literature, it’s a book about not belonging that made me feel deeply less alone. I so admire its appetite to get down and dirty, to wield non sequitur with grace and power, to ponder the past while sticking with the present, to quest unceasingly. I stand deeply inspired and instructed by its great wit, candor, inventiveness, and majesty.” -Maggie Nelson, author of The Argonauts
about the authors:
Derek McCormack is a writer who lives in Toronto. His previous books include The Show that Smells, Haunted Hillbilly, and The Well-Dressed Wound (Semiotext(e)). (www.derekmccormack.com)
Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore is the author of three novels and a memoir and the editor of five nonfiction anthologies. Her memoir, The End of San Francisco, won a Lambda Literary Award in 2014, and her previous book, Why Are Faggots So Afraid of Faggots? Flaming Challenges to Masculinity, Objectification, and the Desire to Conform, was an American Library Association Stonewall Honor Book. Her novel Sketchtasy was one of NPR’s Best Books of 2018. She lives in Seattle. (mattildabernsteinsycamore.com)