Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Blink and the World Goes Blank - Filbert Conroy (On Lives Press)

The unnamed protagonist of Filbert Conroy’s Blink and the World Goes Blank can be found in cramped apartments, on dates, on trains, on subway platforms, and wandering around other unremarkable places. Not much is known about this mysterious character except that he may in fact be you. This collection of microfiction is told through the second person narrative, lending it an oddly instructive voice (“You just woke up. Sitting on the edge of your bed, the sunlight bathes your bare legs.”)

Devising these stories as if they’re happening to the reader in real time is an odd choice, but it succeeds based on the relatable nature of Blink’s content. One becomes immersed as they wait for a train, remember sitting in a high chair as a toddler, contract food poisoning on a bus, try to fall in love, avoid a bum, have nightmares, and attempt to cry after a long drought. In these 56 infectious passages, Conroy’s narrator injures himself, falls ill, makes poor choices, and we can only laugh knowing we have done the same.

For 17 years, Filbert Conroy worked in Utica, NY at a shoe factory. As was the trend in those times (the 1980's), the factory shut down. A decade or two wandered by and Conroy realized that shoes were not the only thing he knew something about; he'd always had a soft spot for books.

This book was edited by Mike Parish, author of Subway Supplement (On Lives Press) and a forthcoming fiction collection (On Lives Press).

About On Lives Press
On Lives Press puts out material you can take wherever you go. We enjoy making little books that you can carry in the inside pocket of your smoking jacket (if you have one), or misplace under the seat of your car (if you have a place like that), or do whatever other imaginary action or set of actions you want with them (if you want to). Hopefully, at some point along the way, you'll wind up reading our books, too.

Filbert Conroy: Blink and the World Goes Blank
microfiction collection
36 pages, paperback
$3.00 direct/$5.00 in stores

related links:
- microfiction
- books with black/white cover

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