The run of the streets

My essay on running and Raymond Queneau is in the first issue of Gorse: Paris is a city upon which so many layers of history can be read that sometimes it can seem not a living and breathing city at all, but rather an archive of past events and people and ideas that have been […]

Gorse

I’m eagerly anticipating the publication of the first issue of Gorse, a new twice-yearly print journal that will publish longform literary essays, original fiction and interviews. It’s out in January, which is now only a day away. The editors of Gorse, Susan Tomaselli and David Gavan, have recently revealed the cover design of the first […]

Hey Manchester… Red Star Football Club

I’ve gone along to a number of Red Star 93 home games this season. Here’s my season review for French Football Weekly: What I was watching from the freezing terraces of Saint-Ouen that day in February was a team that had adjusted to promotion and seemed about to ride the season out comfortably. Then, Martigues […]

Georges Perec (1936-1982)

30 years ago today, novelist Georges Perec died in Paris. He was also a crossword compiler, an indexer in a medical laboratory, a writer of extremely long palindromes and a member of the literary group Oulipo. I’ve written a number of articles about Perec: here, here, here and here. If you do one thing today […]

Eric Hazan talk in Dublin

Eric Hazan, author of The Invention of Paris, will be speaking at the Alliance Française in Dublin next Tuesday 21 February at 6.30pm. More information here. Click here for my review of the book and here for my interview with Hazan, conducted when the English language edition of The Invention of Paris was published. I […]

Charonne metro, 8th February

  50 years ago, 8 people died at Charonne Métro station in Paris. They were taking part in a demonstration against the Algerian War, the terrorist actions of the OAS, and the killing of Algerian protesters in Paris late 1961. Find out more in this short BBC documentary.

Notes on Paris football

I spent last weekend becoming better acquainted with the French National League, heading up to Saint-Ouen on Friday night to see Red Star 93 take on GFCO Ajaccio at the Docteur Bauer Stadium, then attending the Paris F.C. vs l’Aviron Bayonnais in the cavernous Stade Charléty on Saturday evening. (This is the second time I’ve […]

Where am I and what am I doing? Writing about Parisian geography

My essay on Georges Perec, the Situationists and Parisian geography appears in the third issue of the White Review, published this week. I stood near the columbarium at Père Lachaise cemetery. I was there to see the locker-like vault containing the ashes of Georges Perec, kept alongside those of his aunt, Esther Bienenfeld. To the […]

Event: John Holten in conversation about The Readymades

On Thursday night from 7pm I’ll be in conversation  with John Holten about his debut novel, The Readymades. The event takes place at the Pygmalion bar on South William Street, Dublin. From The Readymades’ Facebook page: ‘Holten has expanded the scope of the contemporary novel’ — Brian Dillon To mark the first Irish presentation of […]

On hearing sirens in Paris

Near lunchtime one day, I heard the sound of sirens blaring across Paris. These weren’t the passing sirens of a police car or ambulance – ringing out briefly at top volume before disappearing around a corner and out of earshot. Instead, they filled the air outside the apartment, and yet, passers-by continued to go about […]