Am I the whale? The mad captain? The wretched hybrid ship? The loquacious narrator? The author? Am I stealing this title or being ironic? These questions will probably never be answered. I'm just over here breaking a cold split across the bow of this website, launching it around the same time as the launch of my new novel TOKYO, released March 6th by FC2. The novel debuted as a physical object at the 2018 AWP conference in Tampa—where we sold out of copies. There will be a local, Salt Lake City launch on April 12th, at 7 PM, at The Mandate Press, 1077 Main Street. Books are currently available through the University of Alabama Press (and yes, Amazon, et al.—though I hope you'll order from the press or from your local bookstore), and they'll be available the night of the Salt Lake reading from The King's English. Many thanks to TKE, to Mandate, to SLUG Magazine for their feature on the book and me, and to 15 Bytes for their support of TOKYO in these early days. In addition to featuring an excerpt last summer, 15 Bytes published the first review, which you can find here. Books and their authors need friends, and I'm really grateful for all the support this project has received. Meanwhile, I'm working on other readings around the country and will announce those here and on social media as time approaches. Seattle, I'm coming your way in May.
Beyond that, I'll try to post about once a week (more or less) to keep this space lively and, hopefully, engaging. I'll share a little background on the creation of TOKYO, but I'll also spend some time on books I'm reading and/or teaching, new projects I'm working on, and probably other things that may not seem to have anything to do with writing. Like football. Or my dog. I'm riffing on Melville with this post's title because, frankly, I love Moby-Dick—it's quoted several times in TOKYO—but also because I'm setting off here on a voyage from which I don't plan to return. Similarly, as a landlubber, I might propose this space, as I do my classes and my writing, as a meander, a series of digressions. I'm happy to have company along the way for whatever time you have. I've got the comments turned off for the moment because I don't want to spend the time reviewing them for spam or other nonsense (I may turn them on later, or for certain posts), but if you want to get in touch about possible topics for posts (or about readings, workshops, talks, review copies, etc.), you can reach me a number of ways, all listed on the Contact page.