Tailgater, by Graham Guest
“…make[s] a reader think of a precocious child who insists on pointing out to his parents that, in fact, the ocean is not blue—’You just have to look at it,’ the child might say, and then—when that doesn’t seem to make his parents jump up and down with excitement at this revelation—proceeds to draw up a large chart where he has used every ‘blue’ crayon in the box, and then insisted they review the chart closely, because now, the child thinks, they will understand the extraordinary depth of his discovery.”~ Christopher Lura – Lura Editorial: Craft & Line
These two little books may seem like strange bedfellows. I mean, an all-dialogue transcript that tracks an interrogation-room conversation between a forensic psychologist and a serial killer, and a philosophical dissertation of some absurd sort do not immediately scream romance; but, for a number of reasons, they do belong side-by-side. First of all, both Tailgater and Definition fall into an indeterminate twilight zone length- and content-wise: we don’t know whether to call Tailgater a short story, a long story, a dialogue, a play, a graphic novel, a short novel, a novella, a novelette; and what is Definition anyway: an essay, a study, a dissertation, a parody, an absurdity, a joke? So, just as a physical-practical matter, it makes sense to publish these two things together: if you put them together, then at least you get something that looks like the right and normal size; and, as a categorical matter, it makes sense to publish them together because they can both be filed under the heading of…What the fuck?
Graham Guest writes fiction and philosophy, and he plays music in the band Moses Guest and in the recording project The County Well. He is the author of the novel Winter Park, and he lives with his wife and daughter in Ketchum, ID.