If you haven’t been paying close attention, you may not have noticed that, as promised, Sesquipedalism.com is slowly growing. All across the navigation bar, you’ll find new content. Under “About the author,” you’ll find a detailed biography, a list of influences, and (probably much more interesting than the bio blurbs) two very Type-A lists: Top 50 Novels and Top 50 Stories—comments copiously lauding my taste and those which deride it will both be entertained. Under “Publications,” you’ll find exactly what you’d expect to find under such a heading, and links to buy. Why the hell would you want to spend money on literary journals? There are plenty of reasons.
The “Links” tab contains a slew of hookups to websites which might be enjoyable to the sort of folks who enjoy this one. Or, should you happen to loathe this one, look at it as a slew of escape pods, or emergency exits—whichever metaphor seems preferable. Escape hatches leading to a number of established authors, as well as up-and-coming ones; emergency exits leading to the demesnes of exceptionally literate contemporary musicians who are on the cutting edge of post-Napster distribution; and portals to the hi-def worlds of visual artists, all of whom are just plain awe-inspiring in their own idiosyncratic ways, are all provided.
Most excitingly, you will now find content under the “Writing” tab. Fiction excerpts of both old and new material are en route, but I’ve already provided what pieces I’ve deemed salvageable from a decade’s worth of attempted poetry to tide you over ’til then. And if that’s not your thing, I suggest starting with the essay “In This Twilight,” the first substantial offering from Sesquipedalism.com. I’m excited to share this piece with whomever will partake—it’s unwieldy and publisher-unfriendly nature (read the linked bit under “Essays”) makes me think that it won’t find a home anywhere in the literary marketplace. And even if it should someday find a respectable home, I simply can’t allow it to molder alone in the meanwhile. It’s an homage to an artist who’s had incalculable influence on my life: from being the motive power behind a series of teenage metamorphoses out of timidity and into self-possession; to being a counselor during my early twentysomethings—spent caring for a terminally ailing parent; to (as one professor argued) actually being a primary force in the shaping of my literary aesthetic—not at all with his words, but with the sonic aesthetic of his soundscapes.
Specifically, this essay focuses on the subject of my (at the time of its writing) fifteen-year obsession with Nine Inch Nails and the rather curiously pervasive influence of Trent Reznor’s oeuvre on my life. More broadly it’s about the relationship between any artist and his or her audience—one which can be, simultaneously, quite complex and, for all intents and purposes, non-existant. It is most certainly memoir, but contains some rather dense sections of statistical analysis for the purposes of actually quantifying said “obsession.” To do any less, I felt, would be irresponsible; without the statistics, I felt that I’d be saying to my reader, “You just have to trust me: I really like Nine Inch Nails.” Which is both lazy and uninteresting.
It’s also an appropriate first offering because, as I’ve tried to make plain in several areas throughout the site, Sesquipedalism.com’s background artwork is all rather graciously on loan from the Nine Inch Nails camp’s graphic designer and photographer, Rob Sheridan. Apparently, there is no end to the ways in which Reznor & friends will shape my doings.
So: Thanks to them. Sincerest thanks.
And you, reader: Please explore and enjoy.