From the acclaimed author of the novel Oval comes a book of “fan nonfiction” about living and writing in the age of extinction.
In this constellation of essays, Elvia Wilk asks what kinds of narratives will help us rethink our human perspective toward Earth. The book begins as an exploration of the role of fiction today and becomes a deep interrogation of the writing process and the self.
Wilk examines creative works across time and genre in order to break down binaries between dystopia and utopia, real and imagined, self and world. She makes connections between works by such wide-ranging writers as Mark Fisher, Karen Russell, Han Kang, Doris Lessing, Anne Carson, Octavia E. Butler, Michelle Tea, Helen Phillips, Kathe Koja, Jeff and Ann VanderMeer, and Hildegard von Bingen.
What happens when research becomes personal, when the observer breaks through the glass? Through the eye of the fan, this collection delves into literal and literary world-building projects—medieval monasteries, solarpunk futures, vampire role plays, environments devoid of humans—bridging the micro and the macro and revealing how our relationship to narrative shapes our relationships to the natural world and to one another.
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Elvia Wilk is a writer living in New York. Her work has appeared in publications like Frieze, Artforum, Bookforum, Granta, The Atlantic, n+1, The White Review, BOMB, Mousse, Flash Art, and Art Agenda. She is currently a contributing editor at e-flux Journal. She is the recipient of a 2019 Andy Warhol Arts Writers Grant and a 2020 fellowship at the Berggruen Institute. Her first novel, Oval, was published by Soft Skull in 2019.
Sarah Resnick is a writer and editor. Her essays, reviews, and short stories have appeared in n+1, the London Review of Books, the New Yorker, and many other publications. She is an editor at n+1.
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