3 by Camden Joy
(2001, Highwater Books. 2015, Verse Chorus Press.)
I met Tom Devlin while touring to support Boy Island. Devlin and I got to talking, one thing led to another, and my next 3 novellas came out through Devlin’s prestigious Highwater Books. Unfortunately, the novellas remained out of print for over a decade until Verse Chorus Press rescued them in 2015, publishing them in a single volume.
Palm Tree 13
Bonnie Raitt said something ages ago in Rolling Stone about her “tequila lifestyle” of the early 1970s in Los Angeles. I was amused and grew inspired to imagine such a lifestyle. I knew L.A. quite well, and knew as well that Raitt was friends with The Eagles who, in their songs and photos, liked to invoke the Old West. I put all this in a blender with lime and a lot of ice and out came something like a plot. I pretended The Eagles were right, that they’d inhabited the Old West. I prepared by reading a lot of skinny Louis L’Amour paperbacks.
Pan (co-written with Colin B Morton)
Colin and I were both fans of The Fall and agreed we should collaborate on a book. Since Colin lived in Wales and I did not, we composed this entire thing via e-mail. The way it worked was this. Colin forwarded me jokes and hilarious observations about The Fall. I was to situate them inside a piece of fiction that somehow made sense. It was an interesting collaboration.
Hubcap Diamondstar Halo
My pal Jay Ruttenberg and I both loved the Chicago band Red Red Meat. One day Jay told me how their haunted leader Tim Rutili underwent a strange experience after crashing the band’s van. (You can read my version in “Ghost Town,” a review I wrote for the Village Voice.) I interviewed Rutili then composed a novella imagining his experience. He read the first draft and telephoned. He was angry. He asked us to change his name and hide his identity. We did. Dave Eggers selected Hubcap Diamondstar Halo for inclusion in Best American Non-Required Reading 2002.