Purge: WTF Chuck?

Who the hell invented Chuck Palahniuk?

If he were a food, whatever food it is, no matter how delicious it might be, there’d be a rusted nail or hidden razor blade somewhere in the depths of it. Or maybe glass. Little shards of glass tucked in with the rice of your sushi. I’ll take the Pygmy Roll, kudasai, something to cut up my insides. A Palahniuk flavored potato chip would taste something like corn-flower blue, but you’d only be able to eat them because they’re horrible for your esophagus.

Granted, it’d be delicious. I get that. But still.

The thing is, I know there’re better writers out there pulling off the same insane, pop-art, brevity/repeat redegeneration thing Palahniuk’s known for… I just haven’t read them. Who are they? I just picked up Margaret Atwood’s The Blind Assassin, and it’s been pretty cool so far, reminds me of McCarthy prose-wise, though definitely of a different soul. Then again, I’m only 40 pages in, which blows because I’ve had the book for damn near a week and I haven’t been reading it.

Finishing a manuscript for traditional publishing—I thought there’d be some sort of weight lifted off my shoulders and I could just take a break. Turns out you just keep fretting over it and trying to tweak it every spare moment you have because you know eventually, some day, you’re going to stop getting rejection letters and someone’ll actually want to read your piece of shit. The reason I bring this up and that it pisses me off is because I thought I’d have more time to read. But I don’t.

I’m surrounded by awesome books, yet I keep obsessing over seeing what this new world of publishing and agents and editors is actually like. It boggles my mind now that I’m actually looking into it. The one thing they didn’t teach me in college was how to network. And now I’m realizing just how beneficial it really could be for some writers.

I remember hearing a story somewhere about Palahniuk being told, “hey, you should write a book,” and he did and it was Fight Club or Invisible Monsters, I don’t remember. But until somebody told him to write the book, he hadn’t really considered writing – Maybe that didn’t happen. Maybe it’s a fabrication of my memory, but it seems I heard that once about Palahniuk. So how the hell did he become a published author? Who’d he talk to? Who’d he query? How many rejections did he get before someone took him on?

Wait… Isn’t there this entire cult web-presence surrounding Palahniuk? Maybe they’d know. I should dig into that….

Ok, it’s The Cult, I was thinking about… I also just realized how many Palahniuk books I haven’t read these days. Used to be on top of that. Loved Rant then never even made it all the way through Pygmy. Perhaps the Pygmy roll has gone rancid. What’s Totalitarian State for rancid?


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