Book Launch: I Am My Own Betrayal by Guillaume Morissette
Local author Guillaume Morissette will be launching his debut book of stories and poems I Am My Own Betrayal this Thursday at Maison Kasini.
This collection is replete with both naked, earnest moments and the endearing, subtle sort comedy one might find in say, a character's chronic self-dismissiveness. I Am My Own Betrayal's content is a testament to Guillaume's approach -that writing is a way to hold real life accountable.
"With text, you get the feeling that for any given experience, no matter how you tell that experience, there's always something in there that's going to elude you," he said. "So it becomes this kind of 'fuck it', where it doesn't really matter if what you're trying to express becomes fiction or non-fiction or an email to someone or some other thing. All that matters is that something that was intensely abstract and internal and personal is now a thing you can stare at."
"Books are also pretty weird," he continued. "We go to books to be entertained but also learn, so it's like, 'tell me joke, but make it meaningful.' I like that a lot."
Following I Am My Own Betrayal's release, Guillaume hopes to tour, and perform live readings.
"I'd like to read in Montreal but also beyond, at anything that will have me," he said. "Book launches, lit magazine launches, some band's EP launch, open mics, loft parties, house parties, birthday parties, rap battles, company picnics, anything that has an audience."
I Am My Own Betrayal has already received a certain amount of local buzz, as well as positive reception amongst peers.
According to Maison Kasini's website, it is "A highly imaginative and refreshing literary debut... A bizarrely comic, profoundly modern, honest, sad, surprising collection of stories and poems. It explores subjects such as anxiety, email relationships, owl people, awkwardness, social networks, humiliations, shortcomings, groundhogs, terrible personal decisions, videogames, coping, girly arms and cat seizures."
Editor-in-Chief of Soliloquies Anthology Lizy Mostowski described Guillaume's writing as "Depressingly hopeful, like looking at yourself naked in the mirror."
"A unique voice, with striking details," said Josip Novakovich, author of Three Deaths.
An excerpt from Guillaume's story Banhood may be found at Ribbon Pig's website.
The following is a poem titled I Am Someone's Dream Husband.
I am someone's dream husband.
I like to fail just to have something to look forward to, which is success.
my favorite relationships are ambiguous, unreciprocated or entirely fictional.
I love being retweeted by a stranger more than I love myself.
the trajectory of my life is a pendulum getting entangled in itself.
I regret every part of my body that's external.
my hobbies include dying alone.
I believe that if there is no hope then there is no disappointment.
I am immune to cereal.
I like to delay gratification until gratification is no longer possible.
my penis has unrealistic, utopian views of other people.
I seriously need someone to explain my hair to me.
I am a catalog of anxiety issues.
I experience anxiety in non-anxiety situations.
I read in a book that anxiety is the median between desire and jouissance.
I will tell you what I did with that knowledge.
I revisited the memory of my mom lying to me when I was eight.
she said, 'we can't have fondue like other families, because I am allergic to fire.'
she had anxiety issues and was afraid the flames would kill everyone.
I ate cereal and didn't call her on her bullshit.
when years later we finally had fondue it was jouissance.
sometimes I sleep with the light on.
Guillaume's work has been featured in publications such as: Maisonneuve Magazine, carte-blanche, Metazen, Papirmasse, The Void Magazine, Lemonhoud and Poetry's Own. He is the editor of Ribbon Pig.
The book launch will take place between 7:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. Maison Kasini is located at 372, St. Catherine West, Espace 408.
More information at Maison Kasini's publication announcement page
Yet more information at the event's facebook page.
Image is of I Am By Own Betrayal's cover. Cover art by Celia Spenard-Ko.