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A Cylindrical Object on Fire in the Dark
by Holly Myers
Published by Insert Blanc Press
Available in Hardbound or Paperback, 126 p.
Hardbound edition ISBN: 978-1-947322-91-2
Paperback edition ISBN: 978-1-947322-97-4
$34.99 / $14.00
A Cylindrical Object on Fire in the Dark is a collection of short fiction exploring the elemental aspects of storytelling—from word to sentence to character to gesture to narrative. In the roughly two dozen works that make up the book, Myers is attentive to the operations of words: how it is that words collude into sentences, and sentences balloon into worlds. Of equal concern are the operations of people: how people use these words, whether to shape, accommodate, resist or deny the realities with which they contend; how they make sense of where they find themselves; in what erratic or desperate manner they strive; what they get right and where they go wrong. These works ask how do words, sentences and humans behave in the face of war, ghosts, extreme weather, motherhood, alien possession, insect infestations, love, grief, or violence.
“Holly Myers is a great writer!”
“My view of reality exploded while reading A Cylindrical Object on Fire in the Dark. Myers taps into abstract feelings and existential angst with wit and eloquence, offering a twisted, but somehow elegant, picture of our existence.”
“A Cylindrical Object on Fire in the Dark is as visually evocative and enigmatic as its title. Myers’ prose resembles a film of a mythical and very difficult road trip, a series of mini and maxi dramas, deeply moving and touching down somewhere beyond narrative, where the silences are as meaningful as the words.”
—Lucy R. Lippard
I still remember first reading Holly Myers’ art writing, it was infused with such rich and visceral description, such resonant conceptual observation. In A Cylindrical Object on Fire in the Dark, her introspection and invention of new structures gives voice to an honesty far out of reach to most of us. These short pieces grab and awaken us to the ever present truth of being human, both in relationship to others and to ourselves. They ignite our awareness of the profoundly vivid reality of everyday life. A Cylindrical Object on Fire in the Dark is a brave exploration into what is possible within the short story structure. Myers’ creativity is on full display and the result is a hauntingly honest work of art that illuminates what it means to be truly awake in the everyday.
She was to be, then, a link, a kind of conduit. There were magnanimous forces smothered by smoke; it fell to her to endeavor to keep these lines open. Every day for a week she wore the blue dress and there was a calmness around her, the noise held off. There was a haze in the air but it didn't penetrate; she shone. There was no pride in this, it was a humble, hollow feeling.