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Please be advised that Mr. Champion -- for the first time in eleven years and due to a variety of creative and felicitous factors (hereinafter VoCaFF) -- will not be responding to email for a lengthy period of time. This basically means that he will ignore all email. Nations may declare war. Stunning individuals may have vital and delightful news to convey. The world may very well explode in on itself. We dont know, we cant know, and we dont really want to know. It comes down to this: Mr. Champion will not respond. It is nothing personal. It just is. He will not respond to email (or certainly try not to respond to it) at all until August 7th, when he anticipates the VoCaFF to have reached a natural conclusion. Know again that there is nothing personal in this decision. Indeed, it took several kind and concerned people to persuade Mr. Champion to engage in the aforementioned VoCaFF (which you can pronounce VO-KAFF, in large part because it sounds like something else Mr. Champion may or may not be presently engaged in). It also took a rather astonishing amount of willpower for Mr. Champion to yield on something he takes an especial personal pride in: namely, answering all messages (save the clearly automated ones) in a timely manner. To give up this early morning routine, developed over many years, of whittling down the inbox to some Teilhardian omega point and firing all manner of bon mots and bonhomie -- well, it was something of a bittersweet surrender for Mr. Champion. And this may explain why Mr. Champions autoresponder message, which, for most people, generally contains something far simpler than the many words Mr. Champion has presently expended largely out of a remote contrition and a final sanguine burst before escaping into the VoCaFF (can it even be called a realm?), is so protracted and needlessly detailed and likely in need of some form of editing. Which, of course, defeats the purpose of an autoresponder. Because email, as a medium, has typically operated with the loosey-goosey feel usually associated with a gruff cowboy getting into a gunfight after several shots of high-proof bourbon. (And does it ever really end well? One certainly tries.) So here is Mr. Champion -- sorta committed to grammar and a reasonable threshold of articulation -- going all long-winded beyond the confines of what most would say was reasonable. By now, youve likely parsed the information you really require (Champion not answering email, returning sometime around August 7th). Yet here is an autoresponder in search of an exit, possibly going on like this just because the notion of a normal and sane autoresponder simply doesnt engage Mr. Champion. And now I feel highly self-conscious for (a) referring to myself in the third-person and (b) switching back from the third-person to the first-person without any true signifier or natural flow. The fact that it has come to this -- banging out a lengthy autoresponder and going on about any number of subjects that may or may not be related to the VoCaFF -- should indicate why the brief (is it so brief?) shift to A State of Existence Without Email was necessary. So perhaps good wishes would be more fitting. Whoever you are and wherever you are, I hope that you are having a marvelous time. I cant return your email right now. VoCaFF and all. But do leave a message and I will get back to you sometime after August 7th.
Commented Jul 30, 2011 on
THE LITBLOG CO-OP
Well, folks, the Betsy Wing podcast is taking a tad longer to finish due to processing time and time available (see Figure 1). I hope to get this podcast finished by tomorrow. In the meantime, enjoy the latest podcast featuring Kellie Wells and the tireless Dan Wickett.
I found the essay helpful too -- even if I modestly disagree with Cunningham over voice (just modestly) -- and really didn't see why some condescending snobs got their panties in a twist. Knowing how a reader processes your work is always an interesting and valuable lesson. It may not be what the artist had in mind, but sometimes the unexpected connections cause the artist to truly understand how she's expressing herself. Any person interested in other souls shouldn't have a problem with that.
Commented Oct 6, 2010 on
Acts of Translation
Acts of Translation
Michael Cunningham has a fabulous essay at the NYT about the ways in which all acts of writing and reading are translations: Here’s a secret. Many novelists, if they are pressed and if they are being honest, will admit that the finished book is a rather rough translation of the book they’d inten...
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