October 19, 2017

AGB Open Sunday Nr. 3: Flash Stories or How To Think Of Things

Flash fiction is a bit like poetry. It acquires a mindset that is alert to things. "Do not dream of influencing other people," Virginia Woolf wrote in A Room of One's Own, "Think of things in themselves." Most of the time we don't really look because we're too busy with everything that's around the thing, like conventions and stereotypes. If you look and describe something carefully, you can call it a critical act. Last Sunday at the library we read some of Gertrude Stein's Tender Buttons' stories in which things stop making sense. A critic called it Wort Salat. We also read a letter by Lydia Davis to a frozen pea manufacturer asking him to reconsider his art of packaging. We started the workshop by looking at coffee cups on the table and finished it with collaborative writing. It's a Kopfkino (cinema in the head) in the library, in which we used our many voices to create one:

Whenever I go to the library, I feel that everyone is staring at me. Ich habe schon wieder keine Bücher sondern nur Videos ausgeliehen... Hoffentlich schaffe ich es, sie rechtzeitig wieder abzugeben, egal ob gelesen / geschaut oder nicht! Ob es wohl jemanden gibt, der darüber nachdenkt, was eine bestimmte Person sich so ausleiht? Libraries are like monuments to silence, a place for thinking and reading, many voices being read all at once; a hum of voices; male and female, accents and exclamations - not silent at all. Sometimes I wish I could hear every one's thoughts as they are reading and concentrating at their desks while in the library. Denn viele Menschen sehen interessant aus aber ich bin zu schüchtern jemanden anzusprechen. Allen sehen so konzentriert und beschäftigt aus. In this sea of people and books, I want to swim along time and space and feel free. Unfortunately we're under time constrain at the moment, so we need to stop for now. Thank you. 

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