Literature | Hipster Runoff


Classic Alt Literature: What is the Lasting Brand of ‘Catcher in the Rye’?

I recently read that popular pre-internet author J.D. Salinger passed away. He was apparently the author of the popular book Catcher in the Rye. The name sounded familiar, so I googled it to remember what the cover looked like. I usually remember books by their cover, because that is often a good way to judge if the content/brand will appeal to you. We must judge books by their covers in the modern world because of the rapid production output of the information economy.

I found the cover, then 'remembered the book' from elementary/middle school/high school. I mainly remember it because it was white, and people used to doodle on it. Some bro highlighted the entire cover neon yellow, back in the era of the 'school supplies arms race' [via Yikes pencils/uniball pens/mechanical pencils/erasable pens]. The book also reminds me of 'a book that some bro would list in their fave books section of their facebook profile.' Feel like I don't have very many positive experiences with the brand extension of Catcher in the Rye.

Apparently, the book is the story of some 'rich kid/misfit' who 'doesn't fit in' and 'sees thru all the bull shit in ppl.' His name is Holden Caulfield. I think he was meant to be some sort of character who enables people to 'project themselves' as the alt-protagonist. Think this is an important feature in critically-acclaimed/universally accepted works of art.

Holden Caulfield seemed like he was a 'snarky' bro. Unfortunately, they didn't have blogs back then, so he wasn't able to become a snarkblogger and escape from society by 'sitting at home on his laptop and commenting abt how sillie stuff/people are.'

Read the book a long time ago. Had to read wikipedia to find all this stuff out, but honestly feel like I got a 'good enough' experience by just skimming the plot + reading miscellaneous background information. From what I have read, the book was just sort of a long 'bitchfest' written in 1st person, back before every1 was into 'bitching about their own lives'.'

Catcher in the Rye seems relevant because it is 'classic alt literature.' Probably a book with semi-important ideas that was at a low enough reading level for developing alternative spirits to read. I feel like the only thing I remember about the book was that the bro 'went to visit a prostitute', and that seemed interesting to me since I was still learning about 'how to cum/make sex with other ppl', so the concept of paid sex professionals was very intriguing to me.

I am not sure if 'the brand' of the book was very marketable. Maybe a few decent ideas in there, but it never really inspired the rabid fan base that the Royal Tenenbaums did. Feel like the Holden Caulfield costume never really 'caught on' much like the Richie Tenenbaum costume.

Photo by jaimehaire

Some people say that the popular film 'Garden State' was just trying 2 rip off Catchy in the RyeRye.

Do yall think that books will play an important role in carving the 'alternative spirit of tomorrow'? Or will most tweens just chill on the internet forever?

Wonder which author will be remembered forever-er... J.D. Salinger or R.L. Stine?

I think the Goosebumps brand will never be forgotten, even by ppl who didn't read any of the books. They really built a brand--they even put tactile goosebumps on the cover of the book.

Do yall think book covers are better/easier to judge before they are made into a major motion picture?

Or afterwards?

I am not sure what today's 'classic alt' literature would be. Would tweens read Vonnegut or would they rather read Twilight/Harry Potter?
Is the Lord of the Rings trilogy still a 'good book series', or is it better to just watch it on HDTVblu-ray?
Has Catcher in the Rye turned into 'glorified required reading'?
Who is the greatest alt writer of all time? Ayn Rand? Tom Clancy? Tao Lin? Chuck Palahniuk? JGrish?
Are books only 'worth reading' if they have been turned in2 a movie?
Are books with alternative characters overrated/overvalued because they were written before web 2.0 allowed humans to follow other humans as if they were tragic/inspiring/interesting characters?
What books were u required to read in ur public/private school?
Should I buy a kindle/audiobook player?
Are books 'fun'?
Are books 'green'?
Are blogs the new books/magazines?

'Not to take away from the life of JD Sally, but Catcher in the Rye should have been re-made/adapted into a modern alt tween flick/MTV series in order to see if the elements of the story truly stood the test of time.'
-a progressive critic

“Shoplifting from American Apparel” by Tao Lin [EXCLUSIVE EXCERPT]

Hello, I'm Tao Lin.

You might know me as a frequent HIPSTER RUNOFF commenter when I am trying to promote my personal website or as a model from the IAMCARLES campaign.

I recently wrote a novel called 'Shoplifting from American Apparel.' Some websites have reviewed it, and some have even 'panned' it. This book is intended to break into alternative markets. The title is 'very marketable' which is why I selected HIPSTER RUNOFF as a place to run this 'exclusive' excerpt. I have been told that many musicians 'debut' mp3s on certain music blogs, so I wanted to 'do the same thing' except with a book. (Full Disclosure: Carles and I are childhood friends. We also recently recorded our band's debut EP.)

Please enjoy the excerpt. I hope it compels you to 'buy' my novel. I check my Amazon sales rank on an hourly basis.

Author of Shoplifting from American Apparel,
Tao Lin
(Actually written by Carles.)

Please note: Carles does not endorse this product. Carles has not read this book. He only reads writings contained in web browsers. It is srsly the only way his brain can 'process' information.


Tao Lin’s career/book is panned by some old bro in the New York Times

Tao Lin is a "Brooklyn-based" buzz-author who recently released the hit book Richard Yates. It seems like as an author, it is ur job to get ur book reviewed on 'huge websites' and in 'newspapers' that have a web browsing hyperlink to for readers to 'impulse buy' the book if the review is 'glowing' enough.

The New York Times 'reviewed' his book, and basically took a long log-form poop on it. Discouraged ppl from buying it, and Tao Lin's career is 'basically over.' Could see tons of 'returns' by people who purchased his novel, or maybe ppl selling it to Used Book Stores for cheap buyback dollars.

Seems like it was a real 'pan-fest.'

They pan the intro

The novel begins: “ ‘I’ve only had the opportunity to hold a hamster once,’ said Dakota Fanning on Gmail chat. ‘Its paws were so tiny. I think I cried a little.’ ” This opening will charm the innocent hearts of some readers; those less amused might find it cloying and gimmicky.

They pan his gimmicky voice / stylistic techniques

The novel’s voice is deliberately monotonous. Chats, e-mails, text messages, phone and in-person conversations — all are absorbed seamlessly into the body of Lin’s text, a smart way of portraying the world in which he’s come of age, where we’re connected all the time and, regardless of the device or medium, all forms of communication seem alike.

The reviewer bro seems to be an author named Charles Bock. Googled him 2 see what he was all about.

Wish he was just 'chill' with other writer bros, and helped their careers achieve 'mad sales.' Wish all media was positive, and every1 liked everything because everything was amazing. Can't believe he 'breathed so much fire' abt Tao Lin.

They say the book was a stupid idea and really boring.

This sense of a young writer finding his way makes it regrettable that “Richard Yates” is more interesting as a concept than as an actual narrative.

The reviewer bro closed the review by saying that the book made him feel like he wanted to kill himself.

In attempting to explore boredom, Lin recreates boredom. In attempting to write about obsession, he embraces narcissism. If this was his goal, mission accomplished. But the achievement is a low-hanging fruit, and its rewards are limited. By the time I reached the last 50 pages, each time the characters said they wanted to kill themselves, I knew exactly how they felt.

Is Richard Yates 'terrible'?
Did Tao Lin deserve to be on the cover of Time Magazine?
Was this reviewer bro 'mad unchill'?
Are yall on #TeamBock or #TeamLin?
Should Tao Lin 'commit suicide'?

“EXCLUSIVE EXCERPT PREMIERE”: Tao Lin’s new hit book “Richard Yates”

Tao Lin is an author and alt famous human internet being. His new book Richard Yates "drops" in stores 2day. This book might "make or break" his career.

Not sure what Richard Yates is about, but seems to involve tween actors getting their gChat on.



“Kailey just called and asked me to hang out with her,” said Dakota Fanning on Gmail chat. “I said I can’t leave my house because I don’t want to put on pants anymore and she got angry and went away.”

“Good,” said Haley Joel Osment. “When are you coming.”

“I don’t know. It might not be until July when I can come.”

“Okay,” said Haley Joel Osment. “July is in like 4 days.”

“No, I mean like around my birthday because then I can convince her to let me go for my birthday. I really want to see you in New York. I should try to come this week. I can’t lie anymore. I have to try to convince my mom.”

“Ask her. Tell her she puts stress on herself by trying to control you instead of giving you freedom which is what America is about, freedom.”

“I laughed and drooled a little,” said Dakota Fanning.

“Tell her American and Canadian soldiers are fighting for your freedom and she is taking that God-given right away from you. Does she believe in God?” A few weeks ago Haley Joel Osment searched Dakota Fanning’s mother’s name on the internet and found a comment she had made on a message board thanking American and Canadian troops for fighting terrorism. He had showed Dakota Fanning who had said “What is this shit, I didn’t know about this.”

“Yes, she does,” said Dakota Fanning. “I want to go to New York Friday. Do you think Ana would do anything Friday? It will be easier to convince her if I say we’re meeting Ana.”

“Yes,” said Haley Joel Osment. “She will.”

“She seemed okay with Ana,” said Dakota Fanning. “I keep staring at Richard Yates’ face on the back of The Easter Parade but not having any reaction to it. Just looking.” Haley Joel Osment said “Party girl” which was a term they had for people who did not speak in a quiet monotone and were not severely detached. Inanimate objects and situations and animals and boys could also be party girls. Dakota Fanning said if they wrote a book about a party girl called Party Girl they would be rich. “I just searched it on Amazon and there’s like 4 books and 3 movies called Party Girl,” she said. “Party Babe would make us the most rich probably.”

Haley Joel Osment said “Slut Babe.”

“Slut Party,” said Dakota Fanning.

“Slut Party is good,” said Haley Joel Osment. “Just bring a tape recorder and hang out with anyone then transcribe.”

“When I come to New York we should just go to bars and record drunken sluts,” said Dakota Fanning.

“A fly keeps flying by me, I feel dirty,” said Haley Joel Osment. “It just landed on my crotch and walked around.”

“It wants to have sex with you,” said Dakota Fanning.

“Your mom ate crab fried with cheese. She is fucked.”

“I know,” said Dakota Fanning. “She is very fucked.”

Haley Joel Osment typed “freedom” in all capital letters with nineteen exclamation marks after it. “Scream that at your mom sometimes,” he said. “Am I coming Thursday?”

“I don’t know, are you? Maybe I can convince her to let you come Thursday then stay the night and go back with me on the train Friday so I’m not riding there alone.” Dakota Fanning said the neighbor’s child was crying. “It begs for ice cream every day and then its parents beat it on the porch and then it rides a bike around and screams and cries. It’s happened 4 times.” Haley Joel Osment said that reminded him of Lemming. He said he wanted to watch movies with Dakota Fanning. “I just want to walk around with you at night and sometimes ass and crotch rape you,” he said.

“Okay. We can do that.”

“When,” said Haley Joel Osment.

“I don’t know. Soon. I will talk to fried Nicholas Sparks cheese beast.”

“That is good,” said Haley Joel Osment. “Cheese beast.”

“I kept looking at ‘cheese beast’ and ignoring the rest.”

“Me too,” said Haley Joel Osment.

“Let’s refer to her as cheese beast now,” said Dakota Fanning. “Like tape man or headbutt girl.”

“Sometimes we can call other people cheese beast too,” said Haley Joel Osment.

Dakota Fanning said the name of a person and said the person was a cheese beast.

“Cheese beast is good,” said Haley Joel Osment.

“Cheese beasts like anything in nugget form. Nuggets is a scary word. My brother has a bottle of ear piercing cleaner in his bathroom. I’m confused.”

“He pierced his groin,” said Haley Joel Osment.

“Probably,” said Dakota Fanning.

They drew cheese beasts using Microsoft Paint and sent them to each other. “They are both just blobs without limbs,” said Dakota Fanning. “I’m laughing. Cheese beast. Fuck my mom’s home.” She went offline. “My mom is home early because she’s afraid of a flood warning in the area,” she said a few minutes later.

“Tell her I majored in flood management at NYU and can protect her Thursday.”

“She just went to look at the river,” said Dakota Fanning. “She took Aladdin and a big flashlight with her. A very big railroad flashlight. I went down to the basement and saw my cat sleeping in a box on the washing machine. She’s always in the basement.”

“Your cat is good,” said Haley Joel Osment.

“It’s a small Gatorade tray. It looks silly. I laughed at her. She stared at me and then licked herself. I hope it floods. I’m bored here. Last time it flooded we parked on the side of the highway and stared for like two hours. It was good.”

Does this book seem like it is 'the next great American novel'?

Buy Richard Yates

Official Website + More 'Press'

Do yall buy in2 Tao Lin as an author/human?
Will this book 'perform' better than "Shoplifting from American Apparel"? [link]
Does this book seem 'brilliant' or like 'pure garbage'?
Will Haley Joel Osment make love 2 Dakota Fanning?
Does n e 1 know who Richard Yates is?
Who is ur favourite living modern author?
Are 'books' still relevant, or do u prefer blogs?
What do u think will happen 2 Tao Lin's career?

Will Tao Lin die alone?

All Modern Authors are ripping off Bret Easton Ellis / American Psycho?

This article states that all modern authors are greatly influenced by the work of Bret Easton Ellis. Any emerging Gen Y author with a concise tone that describes sensational, detail oriented elements in an underwhelming/disaffected tone may or may not be ripping off the bro who wrote American Psycho.

It's no wonder, I think, that it's influencing a new generation of writers. The simplicity of the prose, the precision of his imagery, and the atmosphere of menace and cultural oblivion are invigorating even at this remove. The scene where Clay leaves a party at which they're showing a snuff movie is a masterful evocation of true horror; the erection visible in the pants of his friend as they walk to the car an image it is hard ever to shake.

I wonder if Gen Y authors are ripping him off bc they read him, or because they saw the sweet movie starring Christian Bale before he went mainstream.

Not sure if the movie Am Psych is more relevant/well-known than the book American Psycho, at least with Gen Y ppl.

Is Bret Easton Ellis the last great American author?
Are modern authors 'worthless'?
Is the movie American Psycho have a wider cultural reach than the book?
Should I just read the DaVinci Code?
What will Christian Bale's legacy be?
What's ur fave Bret Easton Ellis book?

Tao Lin’s New Book “Richard Yates”

Alt novelist/poet Tao Lin's 'dramatically' blogged his new book's cover art.
Richard Yates will 'drop' in September. Not sure if 'book releases' are the same as 'album releases.'
Will this book's title be as 'catchy'/meme-worthy/alt-appealing as Shoplifting from American Apparel?

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