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Kimberly D. Goodyear

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An Interview with Controversial Author, Dr. Joseph Suglia
By Kimberly D. Goodyear   
Rated "PG13" by the Author.
Last edited: Wednesday, April 09, 2008
Posted: Wednesday, April 09, 2008

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An Interview with Controversial Author, Dr. Joseph Suglia
By Kimberly D. Goodyear

An Interview with Controversial Author, Dr. Joseph Suglia
By Kimberly D. Goodyear




• Full name: Joseph Suglia
• City and state of birth: Buffalo, New York
• Education: Ph.D., Northwestern University


How many books have you written? Dates/titles of books.

Watch Out (2006); Years of Rage (2005); Hölderlin and Blanchot on Self-Sacrifice (2004).

Can you give your readers a brief introduction to your latest book?

Watch Out is the story of Jonathan Barrows, the world’s first completely self-sufficient human being. He has feeling for no one other than himself, desires the company of no one other than himself, lusts after no one besides himself. Jonathan is both masculine and feminine and neither masculine nor feminine—an auto-inseminating super-computer. He is absolutely free of desire (for other human beings) and is therefore desired absolutely.

What message do you hope people will take from your book?

I have my writings published in order to inflict my nightmares upon the world. My hope is that my fiction will invade your consciousness and grow within your mind like a vicious monster fungus. My fiction will infect you like a virus. Everything that you think, every word that you utter will be contaminated by my language to the point at which you will be able to think of nothing else and speak of nothing else besides my brilliant language. My books have the tendency to traumatize readers, and that is a very good thing.

What first inspired you to write?

I write because I have no other choice. No genuine writer seeks inspiration, as no genuine writer suffers from what is called “writer’s block.” To paraphrase the great Paul Valéry, the apostles of inspiration must explain why the winds of inspiration blow through certain writers and not through others. I see myself as the mediator of images in verbal form, the conduit for a ceaseless flow of language.


Who (celebrity/non-celebrity) has inspired you in life and why?

Serge Gainsbourg, if only because he had sexual intercourse with Jane Birkin and Brigitte Bardot.

Can you explain what you believe sets you apart from other American writers?

Whereas every other American “writer” writes like an average twelve-year-old, I maintain a high watermark of eloquence, intelligence, and sophistication. Some of these creatures call themselves “minimalists”; they are, in fact, infantilists. They “dumb-down” their prose in order to flatter readers with low reading levels. There was a time when I attacked such cretins by name. Now I merely refuse to read their illiterate “fiction.” The rise of self-publication has, if anything, contributed to the “dumbing-down” of American letters. Everyone and his brother calls himself a “writer” these days, which I see as the poisonous end of democratization. I may be the only genuine writer left in the United States of America. The intelligent love my books, and the mentally stunted despise them.

Dr. Suglia, you claim to be the “Greatest author in the world,” do you have any statistics to back up that presumptuous statement?

Aesthetic quality cannot be quantified or measured statistically. If I have declared myself “The Greatest Author in the World,” it is because I am the only living writer who fashions truly imaginative, elegant, and groundbreaking fiction. There are, of course, other “Greatest Authors in the World” who are still very much alive—J.G. Ballard, Martin Amis, Alain Robbe-Grillet, Pierre Guyotat—but they have produced nothing in recent years that would aesthetically approximate their earlier masterworks. I never nominated myself “The Greatest Man in the World”—I’m far from that. I am merely the greatest author in the world.

There’s a buzz that your book has captured the interest of Indie filmmaker, Steve Balderson. So much goes into writing a novel, especially when you have the opportunity to see it materialize on screen. Do you have a cast line-up in your mind’s eye for this movie, and if so, how much collaboration will you have with Mr. Balderson to ensure that your vision will play out the way you see it?

Whoever plays Jonathan Barrows must a.) Know how to act and b.) Be willing to appear unclothed on camera. Steve and I discussed this matter on the telephone. It is difficult to find good actors who are also completely comfortable with exhibiting their bodies in their natural state. Nicolas Roeg often cast musical performers in his films—Mick Jagger, David Bowie, and Art Garfunkel. Though they had no formal training as actors, each has a screen presence that is—if I could put it this way—definitive. Perhaps we could cast a former or current “rock star” in the role of Jonathan Barrows.

When do you foresee your movie coming out?

I have no idea when the film will be completed. Steve spent ten years on Firecracker (2004), from what I understand. We are both aesthetic purists, and neither of us, I am sure, would ever release a work of art onto the public until it reached the glistening acme of perfection.

What advice do you have for starving writers?

Starve to death!

What is next for you, Dr. Suglia?

I am currently engaged in a new project, a novel with illustrations. Besides being a brilliant writer, I am also a draughtsman—and a dashing man-about-town.

Professional links:

www.myspace.com/josephsuglia

www.josephsuglia.com

 

Web Site: Kimberly Goodyear's Blogs on MySpace



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