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Issue #44, 2010
People often ask us what Tin House looks for in a submission. I wish I had an easy answer. While it is impossible to quantify the ineffable, the issue you're holding can be decoded for signs and clues. Insight and mystery are two qualities we search out, and are some of the reasons we love the work of Etgar Keret. We also love writers who reinvent, who surprise us with old forms turned inside out. Steven Millhauser, in his gothic teen love story "Tales of Darkness and the Unknown Volume XIV: The White Glove," echoes Poe, but is vintage Milhauser. Similarly, Lydia MiIlet pulls the fairy tale into the modern, messy world in "Snow White, Rose Red." There are plenty of other examples: poet Mark Doty's rememberance of the late James L. White, or Daniel Handler on Berhard DeVoto's classic cocktail manifesto The Hour, which Tin House Books has just reissued. My sure-fire method for knowning that I'm reading something Tin House-worthy is when I am so engrossed I miss my subway stop. We hope that you are as surprised and as engaged by this issue as we are, and that you will become happily distracted and lost because of us.
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Lydia Millet, Paul Griner, Reif Larsen, Steven Millhauser, Per Petterson, Fred G. Leebron, Rawi Hage, Henry Alcalay
SNOW WHITE, ROSE RED • Of course I liked the girls. A girl is better than a feast.
ANIMATI • He was going o be surprised when we jumped out, there was no doubt about that.
IT WILL HAPPEN AGAIN: REPORT ON KIRKENSFERDA FIRE, SARAJEVO, 1995 •
After the tragic events in Anlong Veng, there was a sixteen-year absence before the radical particle physics performance troupe staged another puppet show.
TALES OF DARKNESS AND THE UNKNOWN VOL. XIV: THE WHITE GLOVE •
I'd spent the last year so desperately in love with another girl that even my happiness had felt like unhappiness.
Excerpt from I CURSE THE RIVER TIME • I was trying to avoid my mother, and I did so because I had no wish to hear what she might say about my life.
OUT COLD • He felt for a moment as if he had been shot by an extremely large bullet in the shape of a ball.
STRAY DOGS • Samir shocked the family when he decided to change his major from business to philosophy, and write a thesis on photography.
THE COLOR OF SALT • After the student union building fire and after the cops had talked to everyone, I went down one afternoon just to smell the wreckage.
Lisabeth Burton, Christopher DeWeese, Farnoosh Fathi, Boomer Pinches
BECAUSE A HIGHWAY
Sophie McManus, Alyson Sinclair, Megan Williams
THE WHEELBARROW • As I was going up the aluminum steps, the sun pierced the spaces between the slats right ot my eye and it was then I knew I was sick.
THE INVENTION OF THE SOUTH
I DREAMED THE CLOUDS WENT BY THE MOON LIKE DEAD FISH
EXISTENTIAL SCAVENGER HUNT
Etgar Keret, David Shields
The best-selling Israeli author shares his thoughts on messing with narrative, being an outsider, and having a point with Tin House Books editor Meg Storey
The essayist and genre-defying gadfly, author most recently of Reality Hunger: A Manifesto , talks with Jay Ponteri about problems of egolessness, collage, and how to combat a culture that's pushing us evermore toward shallowness.
James L. White, Mark Doty
WHITEFISH LAKE, LATE SUMER 1978
AN EXCERPT FROM HIS UNFINISHED BIOGRAPHY
A Tribute To James L. White
THE STORY OF OUR LIVES IS SO FAR LOCKED DOWN • On The Salt Ecstacies and the Dirty Cities He So Revered
Lost & Found:
James Guida, Aaron Hamburger, Leslie Maslow, Jessica Handler, Jeannie Vanasco, Daniel Handler
ON PAUL VALERY'S Analects • The continual newness and strangeness of consciousness inspired the French philospher-poet.
ON LEO ROSTEN'S The Education of H*Y*M*A*N K*A*P*L*A*N • Malapropisms abound in this story collection about an immigrant trying to master English.
ON PÄR LAGERKVIST'S The Difficult Journey: Guest of Reality Part II • A Nobel Prize winner examined teh cost of clinging to abandonment and loneliness.
ON RUTH DOAN MACDOUGALL'S The Cheerleader • A coming-of-age novel for intellectual teenage girls became an improbable secret handshake for a generation of women.
ON VALERY LARBAUD'S A. O. Barnabooth His Diary • The curmudgeonly French writer, bent on exploring his own baseness, inspires the writer to flee to Paris.
ON BERNARD DEVOTO The Hour • This guide to drinking is a piece of American cultural patriotism written in a tone of deadpan fascism.