AMATEUR PEOPLE by AndrÉe Connors


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Disintegrated prose about a disintegrating woman--it's the winner of the Collective's First Novel Contest. Poet-actress Varia is in her third month on a houseboat trying not to think of Alex, with whom she has fallen ""In And Out Of Love."" Inhabiting her world (metaphorically) are an Old Woman, a Boy, and old Mouldy, a monocled, mischievous wise-fool. As Varia dreams ""of neurosurgery and Christmas cards,"" Mouldy discourses to a snowflake while the Old Woman gives him oral sex and passes her wisdom to the Boy. Varia, waking, exchanges meandering, free-associational monologues with Mouldy, deciding, ""I am egg hunter, crippled by a knowledge: people's lives die of fright daily. . . o I need to unknown it."" No such luck--""fear rules"" and Varia slashes her wrist. Much of the novel is given over to surreal rhetoric and unremitting verbal play that fractures normal sense (""thlurp, glup, miss lettuce your creek's all aboating. . . timberly rusty mudlark, madlark""), and no larger Sense emerges from the fragments to convince us this is truly a novel and not just a duster of artificially connected jottings from a would-be poet's notebook.

Pub Date: June 9th, 1977
Publisher: Fiction Collective--dist. by Braziller