Welcome Eugen Bacon, a talented writer and the author of the collection: The Road to Woop Woop & Other Stories.
Writing Across Forms – by Eugen Bacon
The Ghost of a Graph
At the cusp of human and animal, what brings you by is something tragic or a coincidence of strangehood. You’re poised with a needle whose tip is moist with a conspiracy etched in numbers, and people are dying. But it takes time from initial moments to new scrutiny for officers of the sovereign state to act in the interest of the vulnerable, or their actions to reach global fuss. Researchers responding to data, as part of a study on the scatter of streetlamps and ethnic disparity, sequin stories of calamity and gore but are powerless to trend replicas on body cams clicking across a bridge to quietus in an inferno of contempt.
–It’s Folking Political (2020)
I never set out to write poetry or be known as a poet.
Yet in 2020 I published two prose poetry chapbooks, Her Bitch Dress and It’s Folking Political, and have a spectacular collection of provocation in Speculate (2021) by Meerkat Press, a collaboration with Dominique Hecq, my former PhD supervisor.
I have always adored colourful text rich with metaphor, pregnant with imagery. Text that is vivid as a dream. I see it in my favorite authors like Toni Morrison, Anthony Doerr, Michael Ondaatje… Even G.R.R. Martin, especially when he wrote short stories—have you read “The Lonely Songs of Laren Dorr”?
There is a girl who goes between the worlds.
She is grey-eyed and pale of skin, or so the story goes, and her hair is a coal-black waterfall with half-seen hints of red. She wears about her brow a circlet of burnished metal, a dark crown that holds her hair in place and sometimes puts shadows in her eyes. Her name is Sharra; she knows the gates.
The beginning of her story is lost to us, with the memory of the world from which she sprang. The end? The end is not yet, and when it comes we shall not know it.
We have only the middle, or rather a piece of that middle, the smallest part of the legend, a mere fragment of the quest. A small tale within the greater, of one world where Sharra paused, and of the lonely singer Laren Dorr and how they briefly touched.
—Fantastic Stories (1976)
In this story there’s imagery in the worlds the girl goes between. Martin likens the colour of her hair to coal, its texture to a waterfall. He toys with the reader’s thinking and refuses to offer the beginning of the girl’s story, or its end—rather, he offers a middle…
Looking at reviews of my work (audacious… elegant and poetic language… lyrical… luxurious tapestry of words…), I can see how poeticity steals into my text across forms, an extension of my own multiplicity as an African Australian fascinated with bending genre.
Writing across forms can be a strength. One form is a teacher to the other.
For example, a short story has the qualities of energy, concentration, economy, experimentation, flexibility, independence, succinctness that long form fiction can learn from… Fiction has the qualities of passion, aesthetics and creativity that nonfiction can learn from… Poetry has the qualities of abstractness, metaphor, imagery and tight writing that fiction can learn from… Nonfiction has the qualities of logic, research, structure, attention to detail and curiosity that fiction can learn from…
A breaking news alert
… dons a rainbow mask and livestream freedom of anonymity and projection. The mask locks in metaphors of emotions: angst and confusion, above all rage. Because it’s rubbish to scramble behind locked windows, screening ideology from crows and ravens. What violation is there when arcades of chaos are full of extinct animals and fragments of spells that animate new creatures? Once upon a time quarantine meant something, until taboos went horribly wrong in local colour, unseen clashes never aired after midnight. Posturing as criticism or the absence of story is the detritus of folklore inciting incidents in a presidential speech on stolen ground. Now we wait.
–It’s Folking Political
THE ROAD TO WOOP WOOP by Eugen Bacon
Collection / Speculative Fiction / Dark Fantasy
Eugen Bacon’s work is cheeky with a fierce intelligence, in prose that’s resplendent, delicious, dark and evocative. NPR called her novel Claiming T-Mo ‘a confounding mysterious tour de force’. The Road to Woop Woop and Other Stories imbues the same lushness in a writerly language that is Bacon’s own. This peculiar hybrid of the untraditional, the extraordinary within, without and along the borders of normalcy will hypnotise and absorb the reader with tales that refuse to be labelled. The stories in this collection are dirges that cross genres in astounding ways. Over 20 provocative tales, with seven original to this collection, by an award-winning African Australian author.
BOOK PAGE: https://www.meerkatpress.com/books/the-road/