Doug Skinner: An Archive on Your Gizmo

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Index Cards (72)

October 27th, 2014 · No Comments


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How Pleasant to Know Mr. Skinner (the musical version)

October 20th, 2014 · 3 Comments

At a recent reading/slideshow of selections from The Unknown Adjective, I performed a musical version of the last page.  Ralph Hamperian played the tuba.



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Two Moments

October 13th, 2014 · 5 Comments

I had forgotten about these two short pieces for flute, ‘cello, and piano, written for my composition class at Oberlin Conservatory, back in 1972.  They seemed lively enough to keep, so I made a legible copy from the penciled antique.


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Happy Readers

October 10th, 2014 · 3 Comments

The book blog “Wuthering Expectations” has posted a nice review of the Selected Plays of Alphonse Allais.  You can read it here.

The book in question is available from Amazon.

Norman Conquest, of Black Scat Books, has sent these photos of happy readers:








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Son of a Gun

October 6th, 2014 · No Comments

A little song about guns: in the first verse, Fred’s son shoots himself; in the second, Fred shoots his wife; and in the third, the singer suggests that Fred shoot himself, so we’ll be rid of him.  The son of a bitch.


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Twilight in the Sinkhole

October 1st, 2014 · No Comments

This melancholy little piece features the Tremoloa, a curious instrument once made by the Manufacturers Advertising Company, which has a single slack string played with a steel bar.  On its first performance, I was joined by David Gold on viola, Ralph Hamperian on tuba, and Doug Roesch on guitar.


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Rokfogo: The Mysterious Pre-Deluge Art of Richard S. Shaver (Volume 2)

September 26th, 2014 · 1 Comment

Richard Toronto has written the definitive work on the artwork of Richard Shaver, in two volumes, with over 300 illustrations.  I wrote the introduction for the second volume, linking Shaver’s preoccupation with stones and pareidolia to the long tradition of scrying and lithomancy.  It’s from SHavertron Press, and you can find it on Amazon.  Here’s Toronto’s description:

In 1960, science fiction writer Richard Sharpe Shaver discovered “rock books” on his Wisconsin farm. He concluded they were not just rocks, but intelligently designed documents, the recorded history of an ancient, pre-deluge civilization. For 15 years he decoded the rock book texts and images he found embedded in stone, and soon began painting and photographing what he found. It was an alien world that few other than Shaver could see. Shaver also wrote essays to complement his paintings. He wrote of the people and customs of Earth’s pre-history—the half human, half fish Mermen and women—documenting their daily lives in intimate detail. He left behind a body of work that has languished in obscurity for decades. Richard Toronto has gathered together the largest collection of Shaver’s art ever to see print. Presented in two volumes, with more than 300 illustrations, Rokfogo: The Mysterious Pre-Deluge Art of Richard S. Shaver presents the paintings, photographs, and essays that made up Richard Shaver’s ante-diluvian cosmology. Now considered an Outsider artist, Shaver was a pulp fiction writer during Amazing Stories’ golden era. Shunned by mainstream science fiction fans for his radical ideas, Shaver died in obscurity in 1975, leaving behind his legacy of the “sensual art of the ancients.”

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Index Cards (71)

September 22nd, 2014 · 5 Comments

Another stereoscopic card: cross your eyes to see the saucers hover.


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Selected Plays of Alphonse Allais

September 15th, 2014 · 5 Comments

Photo: Final cover for SELECTED PLAYS OF ALPHONSE ALLAIS Publication: Monday, September 15th.

I’ve selected, translated, and annotated a choice selection of plays by Alphonse Allais for this book. First performed in the cabarets and theaters of Paris in the rollicking 1890s, these plays include satire, absurdism, he-she sketches, a burlesque operetta, even a play for dogs.  You’ll find ten monologues, three one-act plays, and twelve shorter skits drawn from Allais’s columns for Le Journal, Le Chat Noir, and other papers.  It also includes my introduction and notes, a frontispiece I drew, and photos from the original production of The Miserable Wretch and the Good Genie in 1899.  It’s 124 pages, and it’s available from Black Scat Books.  It’s proto-Dada at its most delicious!

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Oulipo Pornobongo 3

September 8th, 2014 · No Comments


Oulipo Pornobongo 3 is now available from Black Scat Books!  Edited by Norman Conquest, this anthology collects smut written under formal constraints.  I contributed an alphabet (“Hybrids”), a homophonic translation (“A Homophonous Restoration of the ‘King James’ Text of Psalm 23″), and a univocalism (“Gus Fucks Lulu”).  There is also work by Maria Schurr, Tom La Farge, Paulo Brito, Lucy Selleck, Paul Forristal, Ellen Nations, and Norman Conquest.

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