Lit Clicks and Small Bubbles (and Long, Zany Titles)


Did Vonnegut call it when he expressed his concerns about literature “disappearing up its own [asterisks]”? To all the postmodern articles on why postmodern articles don’t get looked at, to all the callow insecurity, the boggy, invasive, self-reflexivity, the semantic, obsessive, genre-tagging: Stop it and write. Write. Write. Like a motherfucker, write.

Or if you’re that hung up, try “alt-lit,” whose “main message is that trying to be ‘alt lit’ is stupid so do you own thing.” As long as it helps you smear some ink on some slices of trees.

I don’t think that readers necessarily dislike writing that doesn’t conform to the style. I think they don’t click on it in the first place. If it doesn’t have one of those long zany titles, they might not click. If it’s not in an experimental social media form, they might not click.

Casey Dayan is a Rumpus intern and musician. He is finishing up his undergraduate studies in literature and anthropology at the University of California, Santa Cruz where he is working on a memoir and trying to one-up Jeff Buckley. Find his twitter here, @caseydayan. Find his band, “Moo,” here. More from this author →