Discover more from Mohnish's Discovery
A book, a tidbit, and a trailer.
It has been frankly 374 million years since we last talked. I know that’s actually a very mathematically incorrect amount of time, but the reason I'm really excited about being here is this:
It’s been a hell of a season of life. My dog passed away. A slew of traveling. Moving in to a new place. Grieving.
A slew of things, back-to-back-to-back-to-back-to-back.
But things have finally settled down. Winter is coming, but in a nice way. Not in a everyone-is-going-to-die, Game of Thrones way.
I’m still able to write. I’m still able to rebrand things (spoiler alert). I’m still working on (secret project). And I’m excited to write my love letters to you guys.
I’m trying a format that’s shorter, sweeter, and more to the point.
Here’s a book, a tidbit, and a trailer.
Several People Are Typing, by Calvin Kasulke
I truly loved my time with Several People Are Typing.
I thought it was (hold your breath) funny, and unique, and interesting, and a lot of other synonyms I could use to describe to say exactly the same thing.
But a few things that stood out—
First: this book takes a very experimental approach that I’ve never seen done before. I put a high price on originality (in my own work, in the works of others) and when I see it, I tend to grasp at it immediately.
Calvin really nails this element. This novel is not like other novels. It doesn’t feel like other novels. And it doesn’t, frankly, look like other novels.
In fact, the central conceit of the novel is that it is completely and entirely composed of Slack message channels.
I mean this, completely literally. Here is a screenshot for proof.
My favorite part is that—besides the fact that Calvin took a real creative risk doing this—is that he completely nails it. A real, textured story rises as a sort of ‘emergent property’ from simple, back-and-forth Slack dialogue. It’s elegant, straightforward, and completely fucking insane.
Before I forget—the dialogue. This book hinges on dialogue. When you’re a Slack channel message book (niche of one here, folks) you have to nail the dialogue. Because, it’s all you’re standing on. That’s all that you have.
Calvin fucking nails it. It’s so naturalistic (it quite literally reminds of the subtleties of styles people have while writing on the internet, how different people come off and convey themselves armed with commas, periods, and exclamation points (!!!!)) and above all—
It was just pure, breezy fun.
There’s no deeper meaning to my previous statement. The book was a breeze: it just felt like a great time.
A personal reminder: we should be having fun, everyday. Whether we’re throwing a football, or reading a lovely novel, or jumping out of a window (no, actually don’t do that) fun should be intricately connected to our everyday lives.
Reading this book was like a breath of fresh air—I was reading it to my girlfriend in the car it was so good—and though the book tackles themes like internet existentialism and worklife balance—and the plot spirals into an insane, I-don’t-think-I-understand-the-reality-of-this-world complexity—
I’m not going to say anymore.
I think you should just experience it for yourself.
(I’m featuring an interview with the author, Calvin, in the next issue. He’s great. Stay tuned.)
There's this wonderful passage in Last Night for Montreal, by Emily St. John Mandel, that goes:
“She moved over the surface of life the way figure skaters move, fast and choreographed, but she never broke through the ice, she never pierced the surface and descended into those awful beautiful waters, she was never submerged and she never learned to swim in those currents, these currents: all the shadows and light and splendorous horrors that make up the riptides of life on earth.”
I think about this quote quite often.
You should probably see the Aftersun trailer immediately.
If you’re a friend, thank you for being here. If you’re a loved one, thanks for being there.
And if you know anyone who might like this, pass it along. Any random “hey-you-should-check-this-out” is always appreciated.
Either way—thank you, thank you, thank you for being here.
Hope you have a wonderful day!