Sunday, January 6, 2008

South of the Rump House

About six months ago, I heard Les Claypool had written a book. At the time, I was excited, because I'd always been a bastion of Claypool's songwriting, because I'd always loved the story telling aspect.

I pulled up to Barnes and Noble, knowing full well that a new book was not at all in my budget, so I decided to do what I usually do: ask the clerk for obscure books by obscure authors that make me sound cool. An in a strike of obscurity, I remember that Les had written this book, called South of the Pumphouse. I asked the clerk if they had it in stock and he gave me that, Les Claypool, totally awesome dude, kind of look. He pointed out the book to me, and after I grabbed one copy, he grabbed the other, confirming his douchebaggery.

The back of the book was a little bit disconcerting. It's quoted as stating it's not only like The Old Man and the Sea but also stated that Claypool invokes Hunter S. Thompson. Anyone can write like Hunter S. Thompson, but very rare is it that someone writes as well as him. I personally wouldn't mind if no one ever wrote like Thompson, Thompson included

The book itself was not bad by any stretch. Not much of a novel, more of a novella, it stands up well against the average short story but falls short of my standards for a novella. The story moved along very quickly, and the plot built into a pretty obvious conclusion. The hick-speak was very distracting, but kind of natural. When writing in colloquialisms I usually have a hard time picking it up but the drawl was easy for a Midwestern transplant like me to pick up. The characters were believable for someone who has known people on amphetamines, but if you've never met someone on meth, you'd probably find it hard to believe.

As an author, I think Claypool ought to just stick with songs. Long story short, the man can't go longer than four minutes with out a bass solo and Tim Alexander.


edmund said...

you are a fuck stick, a critic, you feel so empowered to criticize, but what do you put forth? schlock... you insult with a psuedo eloquence only rivaled by claypool yet you trounce his novel like an L. Ron Hubbard. Critics have one thing in common, they criticize because the cannot make manifest the perfect work, so therefore criticize others for their inadequecy.

and fuck you about engrish, and fuck you about grammar, and fuck you about commas and fuck you about capitalization.

i can continue, and will

Lamont said...

Not a comment, but a question: do your "standards for a novella" include using words like "bastion" and "discerning" inappropriately? (What's with that? I'm not normally that charitable. A better description is "flat-out incorrectly".)

Or maybe Les Claypool really DOES keep his songs inside of your person for protection.

From the context, my guess is that "discerning" really wanted to be "disconcerting", but didn't know how.

You might try expressing some ideas of your own, if you have any. (That's not intended as a negative criticism; I have no ideas of my own, and I write for a living.) When you trash the writing of others, you put me in the mind of a clog-dancer in quicksand; the more you stomp, the more mired you become.