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Each new novel from Richard Kalich is at once a natural progression and a surprise. Sharp, observant, erudite, attuned to our times, he is a writer who endlessly innovates. This time, he offers his readers an “instanovel” and captures the best of the Instagram concept – the poetry of communication through images.

“As the years progressed, my use of words became less rather than more. Instead of obsessive modernist detail and the omniscient narrator, I turned to metafiction. I honed in on clarity, economy, precision, and accountability to not only myself, the writer, but first and foremost to the reader. My mantra became writing is dialogue, not monologue; communal sharing, not self-referential isolationism. I ceased with forced or even purposeful embellishment and poesy.

And now with the digital culture reigning supreme, the image supplanting The Word, Transcendence turning to Contingency, ontology itself (our self-world relationship) destabilized, the Self, interiority, and depth gone or at least attenuated, and without them concentration, books, deep thought, and literary culture fast sinking into oblivion, it seems I was right. Alas, I was right. And so I decided to use words rather than have words use me.

And yet all the above is not to say I love words less—if anything, I love them more. For now each and every word I say means precisely what I mean it to say, or as close to “precisely” as I can get, and I feel I’ve held up my end of the bargain with the reader, our social contract. More importantly, we both have a chance to communicate and understand each other.” —Richard Kalich, from an interview in Rain Taxi Review

About Richard Kalich