‘Stuff & Nonsense’

mantoomean 

See personal writerly STUFF right to the end of this page, including the appended comment stream:

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DREAMCATCHER GESTALT REAL-TIME REVIEWS (main blog)

The Last Balcony: On The Essex Edge (this general blog)

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NEMONYMOUS ANTHOLOGIES (2001 – 2010):-

THE FIRST FIVE EDITIONS

ZENCORE

CONE ZERO

CERN ZOO

NULL IMMORTALIS

SPECIAL ANTHOLOGIES (2011 – 2013):-

HORROR WITHOUT VICTIMS

THE FIRST BOOK OF CLASSICAL MUSIC HORROR STORIES

THE HORROR ANTHOLOGY OF HORROR ANTHOLOGIES.

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 NEMONYMOUS NIGHT (novel)

A DEAD MONUMENT TO ONCE ANCIENT HOPE

WEIRDTONGUE (novella)

WEIRDMONGER (first story collection)

FICTION HAPPENS: EARLY DF LEWIS

THE LAST BALCONY (second story collection
– including novellas THE APOCRYFAN and YESTERFANG)

FICTION COLLABORATIONS

ELIZABETH BOWEN

MEGAZANTHUS PRESS

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THINGIES 2007 – 2015 HERE

Index for DFL’s Real-time review of VanderMeers’ The WEIRD: HERE.

DFL’s Readings Aloud: HERE.

Quotes about DFL: HERE.

The derelict ‘Weirdmonger Wheel’: HERE

Rare Nemonymous Books for sale: HERE (signed by editor/publisher)

I continue to be a long-game writer, editor, publisher and reviewer of fiction. Ever trying, ever teasing… And 30 years with around 1500 short fictions, two novella books, one novel, and two collections – all written by me and published independently. My first novel published in 2011 when I was 63.

If you would like to obtain from me a signed copy of any book with which I am involved or an old Nemonymous edition, please contact me at dflewis48@hotmail.com

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If you want any permutation of these ten books signed by me and then sent to you at the total cost of the inverse ratio of their intrinsic investment value to their assumed literary value, please contact me at dflewis48@hotmail.com:

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  1. The InkerMen Press Publications:

    These two books are available signed by me as the author. Please contact me at dflewis48@hotmail.com if you are interested.

    “Weirdtongue” (2011):

    Details HERE. (paperback)

    Reviews:

    “The slim volume offers a journey like no other in weird fiction or outside of it. It is a destroyer of boundaries in every sense, chiseling away the confines of time, space, identity, and conventional literature.” – Grim Reviews

    D. F. Lewis has torn his narrative to shreds to the extent that all he has left to show us are the rags that remain. – Theaker’s Quarterly Fiction.

    A favourite genre read of 2011 for Matthew Fryer: as listed HERE. And: “D.F. Lewis is an extraordinary narrator and storyteller, and one is swept away by the feast of words…” – Hellforge

    “‘Weirdtongue is not like that, it tests the reader (and I was often found wanting)  but rewards with some remarkable imagery, worthy of a Terry Gilliam  film.” – Heart of Horror

    “There is elaborate word play, with ‘Glistenberry’ used for Glastonbury, and given a deliciously sinister resonance, and a band suggestively named Goldwrap, and further language contortions, substitutions and mergers that delight with their invention.” – Peter Tennant (in the printed ‘Black Static’)

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    “The Last Balcony” (2012):

    Details HERE. (hardback)

    No review copies sent out yet, but already one major review and one kind comment below:

    “I already know that I’ll be recommending it most highly…”
    RHYS HUGHES, from his detailed review HERE

    “The Last Balcony is one of the best author’s anthology ever. […] In the end, I can only be gratified to see this superlative collection appearing under the wings of the Inkermen.” – Dan Ghetu of Ex Occidente Press (quoted from here)

  2. FOUR JAWDROPPING QUOTES from the end of August 2013, beginning of September 2013 and beginning of October 2013

    “You have a distinctively surreal and compelling voice, Des, that makes me think of you as one of those Artists who was born out of his time and will come to be appreciated in later years. A bit like Lovecraft & Aickman – without implying that your work is in any way similar. Keep up the good work and if the rewrites feel right to you then continue and make us all proud to have known you. There is unquantifiable genius in your words.” — Stevie Walsh: http://www.knibbworld.com/campbell-cgi/discus/show.cgi?tpc=1&post=99774#POST99774

    “…‘Horror Without Victims’, the collection further builds on Lewis’s burgeoning reputation as one of the most interesting compilers of short fiction anthologies working in Britain today. Lewis’s talent is a subtle one. The anthologist can too often draw together a collection of great stories which is ultimately, and sadly, less than the sum of its parts. Often the stories do not hang well together. I’ve read many reviews of anthologies which describe them as “curate’s eggs.” But in his decade as the editor of the Nemonymous series, and in his more recent publications of The Horror Anthology of Horror Anthologies and The First Book of Classical Horror, Lewis has honed his quiet behind-the-scenes skills. He has accumulated a great wealth of wonderful stories and, through exhibiting them correctly, he has shown that the skilled anthologist is a visionary, a curator, and a creative force in his own right.” — AJ Kirby: http://paintthistownred.wordpress.com/2013/08/20/my-review-of-horror-without-victims-an-anthology-by-df-lewis/

    “Des Lewis obviously needs no presentation to the wayward fantasts. Even if I have enjoyed reading his fine volumes for Dan Watt’s press and the one for Chomu Press – two volumes I recommend – I feel like there is still space and reasons to “discover” D.F. Lewis. It is no easy feat to “break” Mr. Lewis’s Code. His work is constructed like a house, almost like a living mausoleum, according to his particular way of thinking. In other words: astonishing and uncomprehending. There is no key to this house, although there are a lot of doors. Everything is available, everything is waiting to be plucked but few dare knock at the door. Caution is good. Running away is even better. You don’t read Des Lewis to understand and “enjoy” his works. That’s not the point. You read him because you have to believe in something, after all. The reason for which Ex Occidente Press is doing a D.F. Lewis collection are many, but most of all is my wish to present him as one of main European practitioners of fantastic art. That being said, A Dead Monument to Once Ancient Hope is as much a “D.F. Lewis” collection as it is an Ex Occidente Press homage to an European icon.” – Dan Ghetu (Ex Occidente Press): http://www.ligotti.net/showpost.php?p=94723&postcount=94

    “I love the raw honesty and sagacious intensity Des brings to all of us with his- really- revolutionary and yet so very common sense approach to reviewing literature, mimicking for/with us the act of reading– an activity of constant, mutable flux. And so I might echo his sentiments as regards the privilege it is to be here and now.” From here: http://www.ligotti.net/showpost.php?p=95452&postcount=1340

    Older Quotes here: https://nullimmortalis.wordpress.com/quotes-about-dfl/

    RELAXED SNOWMAN etc IN COMMENTS BELOW
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23 responses to “‘Stuff & Nonsense’

  1. THE AVANT GARDE AND ME

    I wrote the passage (further below on this page) as part of my real-time review of Rhys Hughes’ seminal book TALLEST STORIES today here.
    It made me think of my own avant-gardism generated through Genre fiction. This will not do me any favours.

    Being instrumental in helping form The Zeroist Group at Lancaster University in 1967.

    ‘The Visitor’ in 1973.

    Having arguably 1500 published stories from 1986 – 1999, and the obsessive nature of accomplishing even the believable potential of being able to claim that achievement – let alone actually achieving it.

    The Aesthetic aims and nature of ‘Nemonymous’ in 2001.

    The world’s first blank story published in Nemonymous #2 in 2002.

    The ‘Synchronised Shards of Random Truth & Fiction’ in WEIRDMONGER (Prime Books 2003)

    The massive ‘Weirdmonger Wheel’ (2004) as the textual base for much of my work.

    The blank cover of Nemonymous #4 in 2004. The non-existent issue of Nemonymous #6 in 2006.

    Zencore, Cone Zero, CERN Zoo.

    My gestalt Real-time Reviews of books (2008 onward).

    The HA of HA.

    My years of multifarious neoloquisms here.

    The challenging nature of my first published novel when I was 63 in 2011: ‘Nemonymous Night’ (Chomu Press)

    My distribution of past editions of ‘Nemonymous’ as Found Art (2013).

    The non-Avant Garde nature of ‘The Last Balcony’ collection as a final culmination – an admission that I am not an Avant Gardist at all.

    The Last Anchovy: here.

    =========================================
    atdusk2The Story With A Clever Title
    “It’s this story, the very piece we are standing in.”
    […] I sense that Rhys Hughes is for the Absurd but against the Avant-Garde (e.g. against things I enjoy like someone playing monotonously wrong notes on an untuned piano for some hours as I did once with Cornelius Cardew in the late 1960s) whilst I believe that Hughes is actually bouncing off the anti-Avant-Garde part of his nature by the perverse means of creatively and entertainingly utilising that very Avant-Garde, including Devolved Fiction (devolved to the reader finally in Part One’s Epilogue, leaving the reader fully responsible). Hence the story within the story (‘A Tale of Terror’) about Laura and the monster is symbolic for me of these possibly sub-conscious considerations on Rhys Hughes’ part. But meanwhile, someone from within this ‘Clever Title’ story itself ends up by walking the walk, talling the tall, telling the tale – […]

    Above image is my photo of the cover of ‘At Dusk’ by Mark Valentine (Ex Occidente Press 2012)

  2. Wrzesmian wasn’t too popular. The works of this strange man, saturated with rampant fantasy and imbued with strong individualism, gave a most unfavourable impression by inverting accepted aesthetic-literary theories and by mocking established pseudo-truths. His output was eventually acknowledged as the product of a sick imagination, the bizarre work of an eccentric, maybe even a madman. Wrzesmian was an inconvenience for a variety of reasons and he disturbed unnecessarily, stirring peaceful waters. Thus his premature eclipse was received with a secret sigh of relief.”
    from ‘The Area’ by Stefan Grabinski

    An amusing and provocative description by the narrator of meeting, when playing chess, the eponymous ‘hero’ of RAMEAU’S NEPHEW by Denis Diderot, an eponymous ‘hero’ who is also “the nephew of that famous musician […] who wrote such reams of incomprehensible visions and apocalyptic verities on the theory of the music, of which neither he nor anyone else ever understood a word, and who left us with a number of operas where we can enjoy various harmonies, unfinished songs, unrelated ideas, uproars, flights, triumphal fanfares, spears, ennoblements, seditious whisperings, endless victories; he also left us dance tunes that will live forever;…”
    This somewhat stirs me to recall the passage above from a more modern author about Wrzesmian. But Diderot’s narrator (Diderot himself?) conjures up the obverse side of the ‘eccentric’ coin: “If one of them [an eccentric] appears in a group, he’s like a grain of yeast that ferments, and restores to each of us his natural individuality. He shocks us, he stirs us up; he forces us to praise or blame; he brings out the truth;…”

    “My pictures are visionary and symbolical, and, from first to last, have seemed to be painted by someone other than myself. […] I am thus entirely self-taught, or taught by that other within me. I am aware that my pictures lack serious technique(if there is a technique that can be distinguished from inspiration and invention). I should have given up painting them some time ago, were it not that a certain number of people seemed to find something remarkable in them, and have thus identified me with them, and made me feel mildly important.”
    From ‘Ravissante’ by Robert Aickman
    .
    From the cosmic point of view, to have opinions or preferences at all is to be ill; for by harbouring them one dams up the flow of the ineluctable force which, like a river, bears us down to the ocean of everything’s unknowing. Reality is a running noose, one is brought up short with a jerk by death. It would have been wiser to co-operate wih the inevitable and learn to profit by this unhappy state of things – by realising and accommodating death! But we don’t, we allow the ego to foul its own nest. Therefore we have insecurity, stress, the midnight-fruit of insomnia, with a whole culture crying itself to sleep. How to repair this state of affairs except through art, through gifts which render to us language manumitted by emotion, poetry twisted into the service of direct insight?”
    from ‘The Avignon Quincunx’ by Lawrence Durrell (‘Constance’ 1982)

    “The nemo is an evolutionary force, as necessary as the ego. The ego is certainty, what I am; the nemo is potentiality, what I am not. But instead of utilizing the nemo as we would utilize any other force, we allow ourselves to be terrified by it, as primitive man was terrified by lightning. We run screaming from this mysterious shape in the middle of our town, even though the real terror is not in itself, but in our terror at it.”
    John Fowles 1964 (from ‘The Necessity of Nemo’ in ‘The Aristos’)

    “She was the part of you which you had never been able to untie and set free, the part that wanted to dance and run and sing, taking strong draughts of wind and sunlight; and was, instead, done up in intricate knots and overcast with shadows; the part that longed to look outward and laugh, accepting life as an easy exciting thing; and yet was checked by a voice that said doubtfully that there were dark ideas behind it all, tangling the web; and turned you inward to grope among the roots of thought and feeling for the threads.”
    from ‘Dusty Answer’ (1927) by Rosamond Lehmann

    “So do we pass the ghosts that haunt us later in our lives; they sit undramatically by the roadside like poor beggars, and we see them only from the corners of our eyes, if we see them at all. The idea that they have been waiting there for us rarely if ever crosses our minds. Yet they do wait, and when we have passed, they gather up their bundles of memory and fall in behind, treading in our footsteps and catching up, little by little.”
    from ‘Wizard and Glass’ by Stephen King

    ”There are faces made for moonlight. There are faces created to respond to the wind. There are faces for sandy deserts, for lonely seashores, for solitary headlands, for misty dawns, for frosty midnights. Cordelia’s face was made for rain. It had nothing in it that was normally beautiful; and yet it became at this moment the living incarnation of all those long hours when rain had mingled with her secretest hopes. Her face was charged with the rain that had streamed down the window-panes at Cardiff Villa, twilight after twilight, while her thoughts had been flying far away; far over dripping forests, far over swollen rivers to green-black castle walls of which she fancied herself the mistress or the captive.”
    —  from ‘A Glastonbury Romance’ by John Cowper Powys
    .
    “Unseen or at least unremarked, I orbit the camp. That’s what I want: a place in which I have no part. I want to ride through space like wind in wind and sleep on the void, and be a go-between with nothing but between. I only know useless knowledge. The camp spins there to one side of me like so many floating candles collecting in a weak eddy. What I feel inside myself is fierce and calm; it’s a ruthless desire for an immortality of perfect weakness where I can be a tirelessly efficient functionary turning things over from one end of the message circuit to the other and back again, so that I never stop going back. As long as I’m going back, logically speaking, I yet won’t be back, only now am I getting under way. No one sees you while you’re in transit and the moment you arrive is the moment you have to turn around and leave again, provided there is some return correspondence, and even if there isn’t, it doesn’t matter, because there’s nothing to do but wait for some other message which will sooner or later have to go out and take you along with it.”
    — From MEMBER by Michael Cisco

    “To your mind, there was no greater injustice than to be doubted when you had told the truth, to be called a liar when you hadn’t lied, for there was no recourse then, no way to defend your integrity in the face of your accuser, and the frustration caused by such a moral injury would burn deep into you, continue to burn into you, becoming a fire that could never be extinguished.”
    — from ‘Report from the Interior’ by Paul Auster

    “Paul swam in a sea of theories. Everything from the morning’s headlines to the license plates of buses had hidden significance. But Paul’s torrent of interpretations had something joyous to it. Buried patterns everywhere. It sounded, sometimes, almost like musicology.”
    – from page 226 of ORFEO by Richard Powers

    ’Tis well we know you were loth to leave us, winding your hobbledehorn, right royal post, but, aruah sure, pulse of our slumber, dreambookpage, by the grace of Votre Dame, when the natural morning of your nocturne blankmerges into the national morning of golden sunup…” – Finnegans Wake

    Horror Without Victims HERE

  3. Only Real Books Can Be Left on Chairs

    nemocascade2

    nemocascade

    image

  4. The Relaxed Snowman

    First posted on March 8, 2013

    snowThings are (and likely to remain) slow with ‘The Last Balcony’ and ‘Nemonymous Night’ books. I am philosophically content that I have reached an optimum slow-blinking stasis regarding my own work. Meanwhile, the eleven books I’ve already published of other writers’ work seem hopefully to be accreting moderate success as time passes.

    I once expected a special feature (advertised publicly at one stage) from Weird Fiction Review regarding my work in editing, reviewing and writing but for probably good reasons this has not materialised. I don’t think any one person has a complete handle on my output over the years (not even myself!) – which is no doubt a counteractive force for any organisation attempting a complete overview and knowing whom to consult.

    As I become older, my plans are such that they will gracefully suit my own anticipated audit trail of natural attrition into which my enthusiasms and mental/bodily capabilities will likely devolve and, thus, I intend gradually to diminsh my activity in the Weird Literature field and on the internet. ‘Horror Without Victims’ will probably be my final publication. But I intend to continue reading widely and to maintain my reviewing of books until the very end. An end that is thankfully not yet in sight. Without tempting Fate, of course!

    Winter Sunlight
    Winter Sunlight

    This is naturally no big deal for anyone but me. But I do like to percolate my current plans publicly for general electronic osmosis – assuming that there are any out there with sufficiently interested antennae to receive it.

    There can be no generalisation, however. Each creative person has a differently time-calibrated career that suits their natural or deliberately adopted lifestyle. We all have different anticipated audit trails from any particular point in our lives. I am delighted that an old friend of mine, slightly older than me, is currently embarking upon what I consider to be the very start of his public writing career with his series of novels.

    Nothing should be inferred. Only observed and followed. And any paths altered accordingly. Personally spiritual as well as hopefully accessible. Meanings made clear at or, retroactively, from the still point. The cold point.

    Two associated posts:
    What is Weird Literature and who represents it? (September 2010)
    The Avant Garde and Me (February 2013)
    .
    .

  5. I left Facebook today as part of the Relaxed Snowman scenario above.

  6. “Des Lewis obviously needs no presentation to the wayward fantasts. Even if I have enjoyed reading his fine volumes for Dan Watt’s press and the one for Chomu Press – two volumes I recommend – I feel like there is still space and reasons to “discover” D.F. Lewis. It is no easy feat to “break” Mr. Lewis’s Code. His work is constructed like a house, almost like a living mausoleum, according to his particular way of thinking. In other words: astonishing and uncomprehending. There is no key to this house, although there are a lot of doors. Everything is available, everything is waiting to be plucked but few dare knock at the door. Caution is good. Running away is even better. You don’t read Des Lewis to understand and “enjoy” his works. That’s not the point. You read him because you have to believe in something, after all. The reason for which Ex Occidente Press is doing a D.F. Lewis collection are many, but most of all is my wish to present him as one of main European practitioners of fantastic art. That being said, A Dead Monument to Once Ancient Hope is as much a “D.F. Lewis” collection as it is an Ex Occidente Press homage to an European icon.”
    — Dan Ghetu (Ex Occidente Press) from HERE on 1 Sep 2013

  7. I returned to Facebook in Jan 2015 after 18 months break, more as a swan song than a renaissance. My Dreamcatcher reviews have continued apace and I intend to continue these. They seem to be generally appreciated. The other site has more or less become a showcase for my photos of where I live.

  8. The prognosis at this stage seems to be encouraging for eventual cure, but in the last few days I have been diagnosed with prostate cancer. This was expected, but it was still a shock. I don’t want to make a big thing of this. Other people have far bigger problems than me.

    • The treatment on my prostate cancer is progressing as well as hoped and expected.
      Probably no further bulletins on that needed here.

      • 30.10.15
        Today, with some relief, I finished my course of radiotherapy. This entailed getting up at the crack of dawn for 37 days over the last seven weeks with a round trip of about 30 miles each day.
        There are various side effects from the treatment, that have yet fully to kick in for the next few weeks, but I am feeling very positive about the treatment and its eventual outcome.
        The Radiography centre and the radiographers were wonderful, as has been the support of my family and friends during this period. Thanks to them all.

  9. (1) Five signed copies available of the rare ‘A Dead Monument to Once Ancient Hope’:
    https://admtoah.wordpress.com/five-signed-copies-of-admtoah/

    (2) The legendary NEMONYMOUS (2001 – 2010)
    I, as its original editor/publisher, still hold some copies of all nine of these ground-breaking fiction journals and books that were produced in finite numbers. I am now offering to sign and sell them quite cheaply to anyone who approaches me through my Facebook Page. A chance not to be missed or delayed, without trying to be over-dramatic about it!

    (3) Only £20 plus postage for signed copies from me of both the original WEIRDTONGUE and the original hardback THE LAST BALCONY. The latter is on sale on Amazon for hundreds of pounds. The only other Last Balconies left in circulation are my personal copies that I bought before its publisher closed down. I am selling these at no profit to myself.

    (4) Links for recent personal self-commentaries or reappraisals of my own novel and six novellas: https://dflewisreviews.wordpress.com/2015/03/02/my-six-novellas/#comment-4095

    NB: I also have copies of Agra Aska, the Ha of Ha, FBOCHS and HoWiVi available for signing.

  10. Me by Camille Gabrielle in early 1990s

    Me by Camille Gabrielle in early 1990s

    Me by Kerry Earl in early 1990s

    Me by Kerry Earl in early 1990s

  11. I am currently experiencing Ray.
    I know it will destroy The Horrifying Presence within me.

    I am also real-time reviewing a book of the same title by Jean Ray…
    https://dflewisreviews.wordpress.com/2015/09/08/the-horrifying-presence-and-other-tales-jean-ray/

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