Author Topic: My Elvis Blackout by Simon Crump  (Read 2336 times)

My Elvis Blackout by Simon Crump
« on: July 19, 2019, 06:38:31 PM »
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Barbara Cartland staggered out in front of us again and this time we got the bitch exactly square-on. I felt a sickening, thrilling jolt of malevolent teenage delight as her misshapen, shrivelled old body bounced off the windshield straight into the path of a monster truck which had sharpened electrified spikes protruding from every one of its fourteen greasy axles.

My Elvis Blackout by Simon Crump is fairly magical. I'd strongly recommend it to any bunch of slobs on the Internet.

Re: My Elvis Blackout by Simon Crump
« Reply #1 on: July 19, 2019, 07:43:44 PM »
Yes! I love this book.

Re: My Elvis Blackout by Simon Crump
« Reply #2 on: July 24, 2019, 12:07:34 PM »
It's a glorious book. I really do recommend it for the readers of this forum. It's very much in our wheelhouse. Properly hilarious, experimental and odd. The violence is occasionally staggering and even upsetting (as when Elvis tortures some Vietnam vets with fishing hooks) but the violence is largely Viz-like knockabout joy.

The appearance of "real life" personalities is always wonderful. As well as the Barbara Cartland bit mentioned above, here is one of my faveys:

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He called up Roy Orbison, who he'd recorded with in the early days when they were both still signed to Sam Phillips's Sun label.

Roy was down on his luck as well. He'd been showing off in front of his few remaining fans. He'd written his name in lighter fluid on a glass-topped coffee table, set it afire and burned his house down. His second wife, Claudette, had run off with one of the firemen, and his second daughter who was passing by on her motorcycle had been so distracted by the blaze that she'd ridden straight into a tree and broken her back in three places. His dog had just died and ten minutes before Elvis called him up, Roy had found out that he only had six months to live, plus he'd worn dark glasses for so long that the skin on the bridge of his nose had grown around them so he couldn't take them off now, even if he wanted to. On top of all that, he was flat broke.
« Last Edit: July 24, 2019, 12:28:31 PM by Mobbd »

Jockice

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Re: My Elvis Blackout by Simon Crump
« Reply #3 on: July 28, 2019, 05:14:05 AM »
Edit. Having known the bloke I have nothing positive to add to any discussion involving him. The words 'pompous twat' spring to mind though.

Chriddof

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Re: My Elvis Blackout by Simon Crump
« Reply #4 on: July 28, 2019, 11:31:47 AM »
I bought a Kindle version of it as a result of this thread - bit disappointed, to be honest. There's some interesting ideas here, some funny lines, but the writing overall feels a bit slapdash. I keep mentally trying to re-phrase bits of it in my head as I'm reading it in an attempt to improve it - needed a bunch more drafts, a lot more fine-tuning. I think I preferred the new (from 2017) introduction by someone else better than the actual thing, especially for the quietly grim anecdote at the end which has since stuck in the mind.

Re: My Elvis Blackout by Simon Crump
« Reply #5 on: July 28, 2019, 02:56:34 PM »
I bought a Kindle version of it as a result of this thread - bit disappointed, to be honest. There's some interesting ideas here, some funny lines, but the writing overall feels a bit slapdash. I keep mentally trying to re-phrase bits of it in my head as I'm reading it in an attempt to improve it - needed a bunch more drafts, a lot more fine-tuning. I think I preferred the new (from 2017) introduction by someone else better than the actual thing, especially for the quietly grim anecdote at the end which has since stuck in the mind.

Oh man. I'm really sorry. I didn't experience that at all though. I thought the prose was glistening. Often, it's in the voice of a narrator with a Northern accent. Could it be that?

Can you tell me who wrote the intro to the 2017 version? I might be interested to read that.

Re: My Elvis Blackout by Simon Crump
« Reply #6 on: July 28, 2019, 03:02:26 PM »
Edit. Having known the bloke I have nothing positive to add to any discussion involving him. The words 'pompous twat' spring to mind though.

Imagine a novellist coming off as a pompous twat IRL. The very thought.

I don't know much about him personally, though I looked into him online a little bit. Seems he was arrested on grounds of tree-huggery in 2017, which I think shows good character.

https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2017/feb/26/call-to-investigate-arrest-of-protesters-in-sheffield-tree-felling-battle

Chriddof

  • Things start to happen!
Re: My Elvis Blackout by Simon Crump
« Reply #7 on: July 30, 2019, 02:32:57 AM »
Oh man. I'm really sorry. I didn't experience that at all though. I thought the prose was glistening. Often, it's in the voice of a narrator with a Northern accent. Could it be that?

Can you tell me who wrote the intro to the 2017 version? I might be interested to read that.

It wasn't a Northern accent thing, it was just the way it was written felt a touch too... zany isn't the right word to use here, but there was this weird over-egging in the writing (at least there was to me) that kept holding things back. The bits quoted here are great - there's others which don't feel right to me. I think it just might be that my tastes for prose comedy are different. I like things to be dry and understated even when the events described are just like the events in this book. The over-exuberance of it is what's bothering me, I think, so the fault is perhaps more of me being a miserable bastard.

The person who wrote the introduction was Jon McGregor.

Re: My Elvis Blackout by Simon Crump
« Reply #8 on: July 30, 2019, 10:44:00 AM »
It wasn't a Northern accent thing, it was just the way it was written felt a touch too... zany isn't the right word to use here, but there was this weird over-egging in the writing (at least there was to me) that kept holding things back. The bits quoted here are great - there's others which don't feel right to me. I think it just might be that my tastes for prose comedy are different. I like things to be dry and understated even when the events described are just like the events in this book. The over-exuberance of it is what's bothering me, I think, so the fault is perhaps more of me being a miserable bastard.

The person who wrote the introduction was Jon McGregor.

Jon McGregor? Blimey. Thanks.

(Fair enough about the exuberance thing. I liked it but I see what you mean.)