This collection began as a series of well "Liked" status updates that the author posted on Facebook over a six-month period in 2016. He expanded these updates into a series of essays that capture the disjointed yet dopamine-inducing feeling of scrolling through a friend's timeline.
These essays are highly experimental yet familiar, compelling, and engaging. Vollmer infuses his work with personal details: Red Bull, G.I. Joes, Depeche Mode-all of these grab readers like a memoir or short story, and the stream-of-conscious narration will keep them guessing where Vollmer's mind will go next.
The essays read as a case study of conscious thought: drifting from one idea to the next, latching onto strong images and repeated ideas, and more often than not land on profound aha moments that draw the disjointed thoughts together into an extended meditation.
HOT TOPIC: living in "Trump country," life in rural Appalachia, growing up in an Evangelical family, Gen-X nostalgia, fatherhood.
Matthew received a literary grant in 2010 from the National Endowment for the Arts and a Sturm Award for Creative Arts at Virginia Tech. His work appears in Best American Essays, Paris Review, Virginia Quarterly Review, Tin House, and elsewhere.
Matthew is known for his experimental writing and has edited several collections of prose that break conventions and explore forms of writing beyond established literary traditions (e.g. prayers, epistolary stories, epitaphs, etc.).
Publisher: BOA Editions, Limited
Number of pages: 200
Dimensions: 133 x 203 mm
"Captivating journeys with a playful, winsome guide." --Kirkus Reviews
"Who else but Matthew Vollmer would travel in status faux-updates from Justin Bieber to embalming fluids, from a presidential execution order to an Amazon order for cutlery? A thrilling, hilarious book about the difference between privacy and publicity, between exhibition and excavation, between ephemera and art (hint: the saving grace of life on earth is human consciousness)." --David Shields
Praise for Matthew Vollmer
"Becoming conscious of the process by which we are produced may be the only available step to enabling our status as players rather than simply played, though it is no exit from the game itself. And that, to me, is what makes Matthew Vollmer's fiction compelling at a much deeper level than the play of wit, sensibility, and intelligence in his craft." --The Brooklyn Rail
"Irresistible" --The New York Times
"Vollmer's writing is my new favorite example of what it must be like to see a life flash before your eyes." --Fiction Advocate