Kim Gek Lin Short is the author of two lyric novels from Tarpaulin Sky Press, China Cowboy and The Bugging Watch & Other Exhibits, in addition to the cross-genre chapbooks The Residents (dancing girl press) and Run (Rope-a-Dope), a 2010 Golden Gloves winner.
Kim was born in Singapore and spent her childhood in places like Manila, Jakarta, and Calgary. She moved to the States during the wonderful terrible 80s and lived in Denver, San Francisco, and Brooklyn before settling in Philly where she co-curates, with Debrah Morkun, the reading series General Idea, and is an editor at Coconut. Kim’s work has appeared in numerous publications such as Absent, Caketrain, and No Tell Motel, and in anthologies like Narrative (Dis)Continuties: Prose Experiments by Younger American Writers. Her website is here.
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The Bugging Watch and Other Exhibits
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"Through the figure of La La, a tragic (child) victim/heroine not unlike the stars La La idolizes, Kim Gek Lin Short explores questions of agency and exploitation—emphasis on exploitation. Short is an elegant, entrancing writer, and her second book-length collection is both devastating and uncomfortably enjoyable."
Ravine calls Short's China Cowboy "grossly disturbing and excruciatingly seductive, catching the reader in a tense push and pull with and against the text. Sticky and stuck among the fucking and fucked-up, Short binds us within tales of fierce femme survival...."
At Coldfront, poet Steven Karl interviews Tarpaulin Sky author Kim Gek Lin Short: "Dreaming, being alienated, wondering who we are as individuals and as members of a race or nationality or gender—these qualities of self are inherent to all characters, or should be. These sorts of questions—what is human—confront all writers and hopefully, all readers. We read and write to learn about ourselves and the world—to develop our working theories of ontology, all to further our investigation into what is human. We can’t help it. We are like lumps of quartz refracting our own private Idahos."
At Horse Less Press, Marthe Reed writes an open letter to Tarpaulin Sky Press author Kim Gek Lin Short, whom Reed has never met. It is a "A bridging of gaps, absence, desire: Dear Kim. 'Dear Kim. Your language sticks to me, adheres in transparent sheets, paper-in-the-rain, soaking through my skin.' Dear reader, dear writer. What do you hear? Were you always there, listening through the wall, or the page? What would you say?"
We'd like to believe that Sarah Heady's estimation of China Cowboy is an apt description, generally, of the work TSky Press seeks to publish--work that "has expanded and fused the poetic and narrative fields, creating a zone where elegance and grace can gambol with the just-plain-fucked-up."
Kim Gek Lin Short's latest is reviewed by Travis Macdonald at Fact-Simile, who calls China Cowboy "a darkly surreal adventure...that leaves one’s nerves exposed and moral fortitude shaken.... A successfully executed experiment in prosody that simultaneously braids and frays narrative timelines and expectations, bringing the reader to the brink of every sensory extreme and back again."
Tarpaulin Sky Press is pleased to announce that it has selected not one but two manuscripts from the 2010 open reading period: Claire Donato’s novel, Burial, and David Wolach’s poetry collection, Hospitalogy, both of which will be published in Spring 2013. Congrats!
At BookSlut, Elizabeth Hildreth interviews TSky Press author Kim Gek Lin Short (China Cowboy (2012) and The Bugging Watch and Other Exhibits (2010)) discussing "among other things" the "David Bowie Method, poems who wear cheap prose wigs, establishing a sort of cahoots with the villain, hallucinating Clint Eastwood (musical accompaniment and all), chafing against the words 'strange' and 'experimental,' and being considered the 2010 poetry It Girl."
At Sink Review, Dan Magers provides a rather brilliant review of Kim Gek Lin Short's *The Bugging Watch and Other Exhibits*, from Tarpaulin Sky Press, as well as Kim's chapbook *Run*, which is not only a wicked read (we'll be publishing the full-length version, *China Cowboy*, next year) but is also gorgeously produced by those handbound-book gods, Rope-a-Dope press.
Kim Gek Lin Short, author of The Bugging Watch and Other Exhibits, is featured in an interview-slash-essay at InDigest: "There is always the thrill of creating a new category, and the danger of enacting rules. But whenever I read something that poses poetry on a categorical high horse in a big snooze purist way, I think: this book is a real asshole. . . .
At NewPages, Jeremy Benson reviews Kim Gek Lin Short's debut from Tarpaulin Sky Press, *The Bugging Watch & Other Exhibits*: "Short’s prose poems have the exactitude of obsessive compulsion, yet the imagery and dimness of an opiate trip sponsored by Lewis Caroll.... She frequently stretches the parameters of grammar, rearranging conventional syntax to just off kilter; her written style as surreal as her yarn-and-insect imagery. The result is a terrifying, ungraspable split-level love story: futile, sad and beautiful."
Cover art by Brandon Downing. Featuring work by Aidan Thompson, Amber Nelson, Andrew Michael Roberts, Bernard Noël, Blake Butler, Brian Henry, Brigitte Byrd, Cal Freeman, Corey Mesler, Dan Thomas-Glass, Erin Lyndal Martin, George Kalamaras, Gregory Howard, Heather Green, Jamey Dunham, Jess Neiweem, Jill Magi, Joanna Ruocco, Jonah Winter, Kim Gek Lin Short, Kristen E. Nelson, Kristi Maxwell, Laynie Browne, Mark Cunningham, Megan Martin, Michael Clearwater, Michael Rerick, Patrick Morrissey, Peter Davis, Rae Gouirand, Rauan Klassnik, Richard Froude, Rob Cook, Sara Veglahn, and Tim Roberts.