Published: June 2019
is the much-anticipated new book by Luke Carman, the award-winning author of
the cult classic An Elegant Young Man. The essays in this collection
follow the writer in his oscillations through anxiety, outrage and ecstasy, and
in the process explore the connections between writing and dreaming, writing
and mental illness, writing and the complications of family life.
his famous jeremiad against arts administrators in `Getting Square in a Jerking
Circle', through the psychotic attack brought on by the collapse of his
marriage, to his surreal account of meeting with Gerald Murnane at a golf club
in the remote Victorian village of Goroke, Carman explores the particular
challenges faced by writers who grow up in the contested borderlands of the
suburbs - always returning to his great obsession, the home on a small mountain
in Sydney's west, where his antipathies with the real world first began to
shape his imagination.
Carman's story collection An Elegant Young Man won the 2015 NSW
Premier's New Writing Award and was shortlisted for the Australian Literature
Society Gold Medal, the Steele Rudd Short Story Prize and the Readings New
Writing Award. He was named a Sydney Morning Herald Best Young Novelist
for the book, which is about a narrator, also named Luke, who bears many
similarities to the essayist in this collection - an outspoken and self-mocking
innocent who is beguiled by romance and yearns for transcendence.
between swagger and sincerity...street poetry for contemporary Australia.' - Madeleine
Watts, Sydney Morning Herald
'A bogan flaneur: part connoisseur, part anthropologist of the rich and fractious field of difference through which he moves.' - Geordie Williamson, Australian