New Convert (1 Viewer)

justine

stop the penistry
so i just read my very first Bukowski: Factotum.

i loved it, loved it so much, i went back to my library for more. for some strange reason they keep all the Bukowski works behind the desk... anyway i told the lady just to give me any two of his novels so i now have in my temporary possession Hollywood and Pulp. as a newcomer blinded by love and admiration i'm not quite sure what - if any - formula/method should be applied to the reading of his body of work. any advice from oldskool fans?

i'm so excited about all the books ahead of me, yet to be read!!
(shame about the whole dead thing tho')
 

bospress.net

www.bospress.net
Hi Rubyred,
Factotum is great! Try "Post Office" & "Ham On Rye" also. Then maybe pick up "Septuagenarian Stew". That has a good mix of poems and stories. Then on to the earlier, more lyrical early poems, like the ones in "Burning in Water, Drowning in Flame"

Oh and I almost forgot... Welcome to the madness!

Bill
 

hoochmonkey9

Art should be its own hammer.
Reaper Crew
Moderator
Founding member
rubyred....start with the one in your hand and stop when the words run out.
and welcome.
careful, the punch is spiked.
 
I'm jealous Rubyred, to imagine having all that Buk in front you, it'll be a great ride...feel free to post with great excitement. Whenever I first got into Buk I was running around looking for someone to tell in the office, heh heh, no internet, no one was interested :)

We all here definitely share your enthusiasm, but listen to hoochmonkey, the punch is spiked...

BD
 

justine

stop the penistry
Bobby D, that's exactly why I'm excited! although tempted to just read everything of CB's right away, I'm conscious of the fact that there will be no more, so i'm gonna try and take my time with him - revel in the madness!
Factotum reminded me a lot of Denis Johnson's Jesus's Son - anyone else think so?

130 pages into Hollywood and loving it...

Thanks for the welcome guys :)

Rubyred
 
as a newcomer blinded by love and admiration i'm not quite sure what - if any - formula/method should be applied to the reading of his body of work. any advice from oldskool fans?
Welcome. I recommend taking the phone off the hook and having a favorite beverage handy as you turn the pages. You might also want to bookmark some favorite passages for your notebook or journal. Savor what you read, because there's no rush: he was prolific as hell and most of it is memorable. You've just tapped into one of the true mother lodes of goodness in literature. His poetry is just as good, and I'm sure you'll be tempted. Enjoy. "”Poptop.
 
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...and bookstores too

i've been to a couple of second hand bookstores where the bukowski's are behind the counter including the ecco & city lights editions
 

jordan

lothario speedwagon
when i first really started getting into bukowski, i had the same experience wanting to share it with people... i was a caddy at the time, and so i brought some books to the caddyshack, and we all passed them around. when you have a shit job, reading about a guy having shit jobs is fun, and it passed the time really well. most of the acetate dustjackets of my editions are scuffed on the back, because we would slide them across the floor to each other as we finished them.
 
I tried to find some Buk at a local used bookstore (one of like 4 in the entire fucking inbred, meth-infested, redneck county that Polk County, Florida is) and they had never heard of him. To add insult to injury when I asked where the "fiction" section was they brought me over. It was ALL serial romance. Those stupid Tom Clancy/military action books had their OWN section and romance was considered fiction.
 
*County* I prefer to believe there are places in the world where poorly grown facial hair and realtree camoflage aren't great things.
 
Like you Rubyred... I am just starting to ingest a lot of the old guy. when i was a young boy, i read notes of a dirty old man on a summer vacation... now i pound down 50 pages a day on underground trains while my ears are stuffed with headphones. an hour a day is all i really need i guess...
 

justine

stop the penistry
i've just finished Hollywood... Loved it! Very very funny... a much different feel to it than Factotum - he's much more the teller of the story than an actual participant in the action. the juxtapositions of all the craziness that's occurring around him and the quiet life he leads at home with Sarah and the cats is interesting. there's that constant repetition through out the novel, of weird characters and mad situations, but at the end of every day Chinaski knows that his woman and his felines and his typer are always there.. there's a line somewhere in there about how he chooses what he does in life - life doesn't choose what it is does to him. i like that: there's a satisfaction with the life he's led and a sense of accountability that goes along with it. there's no "poor me and my alcoholism".

i also had fun trying to figure out the pseudonyms he used for all the characters..
 

Bukfan

"The law is wrong; I am right"
i also had fun trying to figure out the pseudonyms he used for all the characters..

You can read who's behind all the pseudonyms in "Hollywood" and "Women" in another thread...
 
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justine

stop the penistry
Is that any good? I saw the film which made me smile a bit:rolleyes:

yes, it's gorgeous. it's a small collection of short stories, narrated by the same character. it documents all these odd drunken & drugged-out situations that have occurred in this guy's youth.
(i think it's at least semi-autobiographical: from what i've read about Johnson, he was contracted to write a book for his publishing house. the deadline was almost up and he hadn't written anything so he just decided to write about some stuff that had happened to him. and now it's probably his most famous work)
it's darkly funny, much like Factotum. my favourite story is "Emergency Room".
the major difference between Buk and Johnson's work is probably the levels of self-pity: Johnson is definitely more "down & out" than Buk.

Because people steal them from libraries.

yeah, that's what i thought at first... accept when i went up and asked for some Buk, they just gave it to me - i didn't have to issue the book right there and then, and i didn't have to furnish them with any personal information... very odd... saw some Kerouac and Ken Kesey hidden back there aswell
:rolleyes:
 
yes, it's gorgeous. it's a small collection of short stories, narrated by the same character...

I am glad to say my local library actually had it (hooray), for such a big library I struggle to find the writers I'm looking for.
This week I went looking for some of the writers mentioned on these boards and the only two out of the long list were Denis Johnson and Philip Roth. So I had to fill my bag up with 'Vernon God Little' and some Poe short stories.

I went to pay my fine (96p) and the girl told me that I didn't need to pay it straight away as you're allowed up to £10 credit, I asked if I could have cashback.

She said no.

One last thing, has anyone read 'The third Policeman' by Flann O'brien? Unsurprisingly the library didn't have it and I was considering buying it when I get paid, however they pay me peanuts so I have to plan my spending carefully (week 1-rice n beans, week 2-potatoes, week 3....)
 

jordan

lothario speedwagon
the thrid policeman is great. i read it in grad school for a paper i was writing on bicycles. very bizarre- not like the other books dicussed in this thread. but certainly worth a read (it goes by pretty quickly).
 

justine

stop the penistry
Finished Post Office last night in one sitting - another masterpiece!

the fun never ends... i'm off to the library on my lunch break today to get more Buk!
 

HenryChinaski

Founding member
Ah, I remember when I first got into the madness. I started with Post Office, went to MockingBird Wish Me Luck, then to Ham On Rye.

Rubyred, don't you feel like you've discovered something so amazing that now you can't imagine what you'd be like if you hadn't discovered it?

Bukowski, was and is my salvation. It's always great to hear of somebody else who experienced what I have.

I'm sure it will become an obsession of yours, like all of the rest of us here. And boy oh boy, you're in for the ride of your life.

The next thing you'll do, after you read all the library books, is buy every single one of them yourself. Collecting Buk is addictive...and I bet you money that it'll happen to you too.
 

Bukfan

"The law is wrong; I am right"
Amen! - and don't forget the cd's. Listening to Buk reading his poems is so much better than reading them yourself...
 
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HenryChinaski

Founding member
Exactly, man, I know I'm guilty of this, and if anybody else does the same thing, confess it here.
sometimes, I'll listen to a cd, and find the poem in a collection of poetry and follow it along in the book as buk reads it.

yeah I know, I'm really fucked up.
My favorite work to do this with is the Little Tailor, from Notes Of A Dirty Old Man. I swear to god I've read that story at least fifty times.
 

justine

stop the penistry
it IS exciting to have this whole new world opened up to me... but now all i wanna do is sit around and read and talk about reading!!

i find it interesting that Buk's work gets so much abusive criticism. before i read his stuff i had heard various comments about his brutishness, misogyny and violence etc. but it's nowhere near the levels people make it out to be. i actually find him to be a really compassionate, generous character in his novels. there' that scene in Post Office where G.G. has a nervous breakdown, and Chinaski is the only one who cares or tries to help. and then when Betty ends up in hospital in an alcoholic coma, it's Chinaski who combs her hair and washes her and demands the medical staff do more for her. what kind of "nasty misogynist" behaves like that??? None that i know!!
 

justine

stop the penistry
Ah, I remember when I first got into the madness. I started with Post Office, went to MockingBird Wish Me Luck, then to Ham On Rye.

Rubyred, don't you feel like you've discovered something so amazing that now you can't imagine what you'd be like if you hadn't discovered it?

Bukowski, was and is my salvation. It's always great to hear of somebody else who experienced what I have.

I'm sure it will become an obsession of yours, like all of the rest of us here. And boy oh boy, you're in for the ride of your life.

The next thing you'll do, after you read all the library books, is buy every single one of them yourself. Collecting Buk is addictive...and I bet you money that it'll happen to you too.

i'm actually an avid book-buyer, i HAVE to own the books i love. unfortunately the financial status of being a student means i can only afford
2nd-hand books, and Buk is nowhere to be found in any local stores (yes, i've already begun searching high and low!).

i love how everyone on this website is so enthusiastic and not wanky or pretentious about Buk... it's heartwarming :)
there was one other book-lovers forum i used to post on but everyone there had there head up there ass most of the time, and because i wasn't uber-erudite i basically got ignored.

i guess considering the kind of guy Buk was, it would be pretty ironic to be a literary snob AND like Buk's work ;)
 

Bukfan

"The law is wrong; I am right"
Exactly, man, I know I'm guilty of this, and if anybody else does the same thing, confess it here.
sometimes, I'll listen to a cd, and find the poem in a collection of poetry and follow it along in the book as buk reads it.

yeah I know, I'm really fucked up.
My favorite work to do this with is the Little Tailor, from Notes Of A Dirty Old Man. I swear to god I've read that story at least fifty times.

You're not the only one who does that...;) That's the way I found out that the poem "Style" is much shorter in print than when he reads it on "Poems & insults"!
Thanks for mentioning the little tailor story, called "Short story" on the "Solid Citizen" cd. I wasn't aware it's in "Notes...". Just checked it out and found it on page 75...
 
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Hey folks, brand new on Bukowski, I got my first book two months ago. I started with Post Office, love it! then Run with the hunted, followed by Women, now I am Septuagenarian stew, after all of these great pieces..I got to buy the DVD Born in to this and the Buk Tapes...love this change in my life...well...since I read the first book, somehow I am reading Buk everyday..at least a poem...keeps me sane in this unsane world...Glad to join this forum and share this new passion
 

HenryChinaski

Founding member
You're not the only one who does that...;) That's the way I found out that the poem "Style" is much shorter in print than when he reads it on "Poems & insults"!
Thanks for mentioning the little tailor story, called "Short story" on the "Solid Citizen" cd. I wasn't aware it's in "Notes...". Just checked it out and found it on page 75...

actually The Little Tailor isn't on Solid Citizen. Or, at least not on mine.

actually, I forget what disc it's on. I think it might be King Of Poets.
I know he starts off by saying...

"I get very tired of poetry. Lets have a short story..." or something along those lines.
 
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bospress.net

www.bospress.net
Hey folks, brand new on Bukowski, I got my first book two months ago. I started with Post Office, love it! then Run with the hunted, followed by Women, now I am Septuagenarian stew, after all of these great pieces..I got to buy the DVD Born in to this and the Buk Tapes...love this change in my life...well...since I read the first book, somehow I am reading Buk everyday..at least a poem...keeps me sane in this unsane world...Glad to join this forum and share this new passion

Welcome!

You have the bug. There is no cure for it. Not that any of us would want the cure... You are with a "support group" of sorts. Some of us have the madness worse than others, but we are all a bit mad....

Bill
 

Bukfan

"The law is wrong; I am right"
actually The Little Tailor isn't on Solid Citizen. Or, at least not on mine.

actually, I forget what disc it's on. I think it might be King Of Poets.
I know he starts off by saying...

"I get very tired of poetry. Lets have a short story..." or something along those lines.

I don't get it. I have the cd right here (Solid Citizen). First there are 20 tracks from the Hamburg reading. Then comes 4 tracks (21-24) called Home recording 1969. It's the last track, no. 24, called A Short Story. King of Poets only have poems on it. So, listen to track 24 on Solid Citizen...
 
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HenryChinaski

Founding member
wow, now that's really fucked up.

My copy of Solid Citizen only has 23 tracks. WTF?

I feel gyped out. THATS MY FAVORITE GODDAMN STORY...and I get a mongoloid copy of the cd with only 23 tracks?

this doesnt make sense.

EDIT: Just listened to it. It says there is only 23 tracks but the short story just isnt listed. It's on here though. Now I'm relieved. Shwew!
 

Bukfan

"The law is wrong; I am right"
Yeah, what a fuck-up! My copy is also fucked up, but a different fuck-up. There's 24 tracks, the last being A Short Story (the little tailor). But in reality there's only 23, because track 15 (The Construction of the Masses) is really a part of track 14 (Trading insults)! That fucks up the rest of the track numbers because now no. 16 is really no. 15 and no. 17 is really no. 16 and so on, ending with no. 24 (A Short Story) really being no.23 - the last track. Are your copy also fucked up in this way? With the difference that your A short story is'nt listed at all, but on it anyway...
 
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Ponder

"So fuck Doubleday Doran"
RIP
I feel very fucked up I don't own a Solid Citizen copy. :D
 
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Domator

Founding member
I heard only about 23/24 - tracks CD. 4 tracks comes from 70 minutes in hell (the same session), but i don't know why (It's enough space on compact disc, isn't it?) .
 

Bukfan

"The law is wrong; I am right"
I wonder about that myself. 70 min. in Hell was originally called 90 min. in Hell on tape. It's strange that they reduced it to 70 min. in Hell an put the remaining 23 min. on Solid Citizen...:confused:
 
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Back to the original post on this thread:
I know a lot of longtime Bukowski fans must be envious of newcomers, as I am envious of anyone who hasn't seen the Marx Bros. movies. Just as Rubyred, I recently got into Buk and bought three of his poetry books--Love is a Dog from Hell, War All the Time, and Burning in Water, Drowning in Flame--after talking with a coworker about him and getting the DVD of Born Into This. I know there are many stories and poems, so I'm going to pace myself and enjoy every minute. I haven't read any of his stories or articles, but I'll be getting Notes of a Dirty Old Man any day now, and Post Office is definitely on my reading list.

I've been bitten really bad, but I don't want an antidote. There are definitely literary riches to be mined here.
 
Welcome Bug 77, Rubyred is going strong as you can read for yourself ;)...I remember the same enthusiasm you two are experiencing now and the good news is...it doesn't necessarily fade away...there is a lot to read (and re-read and re-read). To listen to, to watch and to discuss right here...this is really agreat forum

The one thing I have done is occasionally sit down and type out Bukowski poems...its interesting because as you get going a rythm of one kind or another sort of takes over and you'll notice that a word he has selected is different than the word you expected (or would have selected yourself)...but his word is 'right' - out of all the possibilities, the word he has chosen seems to be just right :)

Bobby D
 

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