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Ofelia Hunt

Ofelia Hunt is the author of My Eventual Bloodless Coup (Bear Parade). She lives in Portland, Oregon. This is her first novel.

Blurbs

"This book would like to give you an ice cream, but you will have to get in the van."

– Amelia Gray, author of Museum of the Weird

"The ironic is a mere ancient whisper in this torqued narrative: its odd violence feels true. Today & Tomorrow crashes through the windows of strip malls and paints the hypertrophic aisles with bristly-creepy hilarity."

– Stacey Levine, author of The Girl With Brown Fur

"Ofelia Hunt is the balladeer of the doe-eyed detrivores of over-stimulation. Within Today & Tomorrow, readers find the fried and the frayed nerves in the youth of the Hyperworld. All will be well, America, as long as the rims keep spinning and Hunt keeps writing."

– Matthew Simmons, author of A Jello Horse

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Today & Tomorrow

You Are the Fireworks Not the Goodbyes

07/04/11

Here they come. Boom boom, splatters of light. Grills, slushies, flip-flops. June’s gone, and that means we have to say goodbye to Today & Tomorrow’s month as a featured book on The Lit Pub. Don’t worry! T&T’s time at The Lit Pub isn’t over forever, but before we get into all that, a few huge thanks:

Foremost, thank you to Molly Gaudry and Chris Newgent for inviting Magic Helicopter in the first place. The Lit Pub is proving itself to be everything envisioned for it: an open and welcoming place to discuss new independent books and share our own stories, a smart and friendly place to talk about how we relate to what we read. In short, a real reading community. Kudos to Molly and Chris for all their hard work, and to the many folks working under The Lit Pub umbrella to make this place so awesome. Special extra fist bump to Molly, who is crazy dedicated and ambitious, not to mention ridiculously generous, smart, talented, and all those good things. I honestly can’t think of anyone else in the indie lit community who could’ve coordinated this project as well as she has (certainly not me!), or who could’ve pursued such impressive goals in such a real way. Molly is the real deal, y’all.

And big duhs of thanks to Ofelia Hunt for writing such a hypnotic and provocative and terrific novel. And what’s more, for lending her time to participate in this discussion and answer questions and tell us what the deal with the thin man is. Ofelia is a huge talent, and T&T is only the first battalion. I can’t wait to see what comes next from the big plastic aisles of Hunt’s mind.

I think a big part of the reason this launch month has worked so well has been the ample participation of the authors: Ofelia, Ethel Rohan, and Lidia Yuknavitch. For them, what a great chance to have so many people curious and passionately discussing your work. And for us, how cool that The Lit Pub gives the authors a chance to engage so directly with readers.

We’ve talked a lot about a lot of different things with T&T this month: authorial identity, violence, consumerism, families, grandfathers, unreliable narrators, robots, lies, and (of course) Bill Murray. T&T isn’t all that easy a book to break down into segments and submit for discussion. What I love about it is how unique a beast it is, a uniqueness that makes it hard to come up with ways to spur the kind of emotional personal discussion that’s gone on so well for The Chronology of Water and Cut Through the Bone. But I’ve been constantly delighted by the insight and energy of the discussions we do have, and I’m especially grateful to guest posters Amber Nelson, Dave K, and Tao Lin for pushing the conversation in new directions when I ran out of things to say. As Chris mentioned in his farewell post, The Lit Pub feels like a throwback to college in the best ways; not lit class so much as the awesome discussions we would have with friends after class. When we went back to our tuna can apartments or weird-ass hippie cafes and got into the real nitty-gritty about the words we loved and cared about.

So thanks, finally, to all you smart and witty and enthusiastic readers for making The Lit Pub what it is. I’ve been stoked to share Today & Tomorrow with you, and I hope you stick around, as we’ll continue to have a page here, and I invite anybody to contact me about making a guest post in the future, hosting a new discussion, etc. If you’ve been enjoying the discussion but haven’t had the chance to read the book yet, don’t worry: it will stay available in The Lit Pub’s Community Bookstore. I’ll also try to keep everybody here abreast of T&T developments: new reviews, interviews, readings, etc. For example, if you haven’t seen it yet, check out Ofelia’s Largehearted Boy Book Notes, where she talks about the book and some of its musical inspiration, including shoutouts to Judy Garland, Modest Mouse, Cat Power, and more.

We’ll be making way in July for a new featured publisher and book, but we’ll still be here, eager to hang out with this awesome community of readers. Happy fireworks, everybody. Thanks for a great June!

If you’re in San Francisco, Portland, or Seattle, make sure to catch Ofelia at one of her upcoming readings. Like this Thursday, July 7th, at Adobe Books in San Francisco. That’s right, the real Ofelia. See if she really looks like Bill Murray. Then let us know.

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9 Comments

  1. Jordan Blum said on 07/04/11 at 11:07 am Reply

    Excellent recap/farewell. It’s been awesome talking about T&T. I especially concur with two points you made.

    First, that the involvement of the authors themselves participated. It takes the whole idea of literary discussion to the next level if the person you’re discussing is discussing your discussion with you (wow, say that 5x fast). It’s one thing to speculate amongst ourselves, but it’s whole ‘nother to have one of the authors chime in and correct/agree with us.

    Second, your comment that “The Lit Pub feels like a throwback to college in the best ways; not lit class so much as the awesome discussions we would have with friends after class.” I totally feel the same, and that’s why I like it. No scholarly analysis, no pretension, and no right or wrong answer. It’s just been a casual conversation–intimate yet fun too.

    Again, it feels like a community of readers/writers, and we should all toast to TLP with our coffee cups!

    Reply

    Molly Gaudry said on 07/04/11 at 12:16 pm

    I’m toasting with my coffee cup!

    Thanks, Jordan, for your thoughts here, and for pointing out Mike’s two points about the author-interaction and the fun lit discussions we have. I’m glad we’re succeeding in our mission, to form a community of readers and writers and other artists, too.

    Molly Gaudry said on 07/04/11 at 12:24 pm

    And Mike,

    Thank you for helping us launch. I think there was a lot of extra pressure on the first guest publisher to lead the way for the other guest publishers who’ll be joining us in the months to come.

    To everyone reading this — we didn’t give Mike any real guidelines, so he was kind of on his own over here. Not the greatest situation for him, but definitely helpful for our other guest publishers, who will at least have a framework — knowing now what Mike did in June and what Chris and I do over in our columns.

    It means a lot to me to have Mike Young as our first guest publisher. I can’t express enough how wonderful it was to know that Magic Helicopter would be launching with us.

    Several years ago, when I first found the indie writers’ scene online, I was completely awestruck by Mike’s energy and enthusiasm and, most of all, his friendliness. I’d heard of Mike’s NOO Journal and of Magic Helicopter. At AWP Chicago, what was that, 2009, Mike and Ryan Call were flying a little “magic” helicopter around the Book Fair. HTML Giant wasn’t that old yet, either, then, and I just remember being completely blown away by how cool all these people were in real life — Blake Butler, Gene Morgan, Mike Young, Adam Robinson, Shane Jones, Jason Jordan, Peter Cole, and Amelia Gray and Justin Taylor come to mind immediately, when I recall that AWP experience.

    And then there was the train reading. Have you heard about this? To borrow a phrase Lidia likes to use, I’ll just say: “It was epic.” All these indie people crammed into a train, a bunch of writers reading (I mean screaming) on the train, and all of us on our way to another reading. And meanwhile, I heard later, some woman on that train, just trying to get home at the end of a work day, talking on her cell phone and asking, “Why are these people screaming?”

    When I think of where I am now, how I got here, in my career as a writer, I know I couldn’t have done any of it without the online magazines, the editors of those magazines, the DIY publishers who are often making books in their free time, during the wee hours, after they’ve worked their first and second jobs. It is the energy of those people on that train ride that I like to think of, when I need a boost on a long, tired day. It is that train ride that made me think, God, you had to be there. And this is how I feel about what is happening right now, with all these indie writers and publishers and all their collective energy. It’s like, if you’re not a part of it, you’re missing out. And then, when we’re all old and on our way out, we’ll be saying, Man, you had to be there.

    And that train ride? Yeah, it was Mike Young who organized it (and if you watch the video I linked up there, you can see him directing and introducing), with Adam Robinson. And so those two guys, well, I have held them in high esteem ever since.

    Mike, I hope we’ll still know each other when we’re old, and on my way out, I’ll be sure to say to you, Man, those were the good old days.

    So thank you, again, for helping us launch. For so many, many reasons, I’m honored and amazed that you were here to help us get our feet off the ground. And I can’t thank you enough — not just for being our inaugural guest publisher — but for all of the energy and spirit and love you have brought, and continue to bring, to everything you do.

    Yrs,
    Molly

    Mike Young said on 07/04/11 at 12:47 pm

    Ha, yeah, discussing the discussing! Thanks for everything, Jordan. =)

    Mike Young said on 07/04/11 at 12:53 pm

    Molly, aw, knock it off, you’re too nice. And you have the energy of five train readings by yourself! I had a great time learning the ropes, and I’m excited to see what Roxane does next month, and all the guest publishers to come. I don’t want to get old, but if I do, I’m sure we’ll have plenty of good old days to reminiscence about! =)

  2. Ofelia said on 07/04/11 at 12:14 pm Reply

    Dude…

    The Lit Pub is awesome. And it does remind me of ‘seminar’ at The Evergreen State College (where there are no grades, only academic reviews, and where I met some of my best friends). I want to thank Mike Young, Amber Nelson, Dave K. and Tao Lin for writing with such interest and kindness about T&T (which I had always hoped at least five to eleven people would read). And of course many thanks are due to Molly Gaudry, Chris Newgent, Ethel Rohan, and Lidia Yuknavitch. All in all, I’d say The Lit Pub helped me to love books even more than I already loved them. It is sunny in Portland, OR. And probably my partner and I will be reading most of the day.

    Reply

    Molly Gaudry said on 07/04/11 at 12:36 pm

    Ofelia,

    I wrote a little note above to Mike, and I was going to include you in it but then it got too long. So I’m glad you left this comment, so I can write my letter to you here.

    I am so glad that Mike was able to feature T&T here during our first month, and for your own future reference (to echo Mike’s post above), T&T always has a permanent home right here on our site. Our website isn’t like a regular blog site, where posts get archived into oblivion — here, each featured book gets its own URL (this is yours), and all the individual posts are archived as an extension of that URL. Which is to say, you can always send people here to T&T’s page, where they will be able to find all the reviews, interviews, etc. And so, of course, as T&T gains more acclaim and fame, you and Mike are both welcome to send me updates, so I can keep current with all the latest T&T news. Likewise, if anyone you know would like to write a guest post for T&T, you are welcome to send them straight to Mike or me.

    All of this is to say — I can’t wait to see what happens with T&T, because obviously this is just the beginning for it. And I’m so glad we could feature it here, in our first month on earth, because your words absolutely deserve a wider audience. I hope in the months to come, as our audience grows bigger and bigger, more and more people will find T&T, and you, and love you both as much as we at TLP do.

    XO,
    Molly

    Mike Young said on 07/04/11 at 12:49 pm

    It is insanely hot in Northampton, MA, and I will probably be complaining about it for the rest of the day. But you are the real deal, Ofelia Hunt. Congrats to you and your partner and the rumored mini person on its way soon. ;)

    Molly Gaudry said on 07/04/11 at 1:31 pm

    There is a mini person?!?! Congrats, Ofelia!!!

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