WRITER, EDITOR, ARTIST
WORLDS FROM THE WORD'S END
September 2017, And Other Stories
‘Joanna Walsh is clever, funny and merciless. She abducts people from their apparently normal lives and confronts them with the fact that dystopia is not a place in the future but a room in their own house.’ Yuri Herrera
‘Terrifyingly perceptive, subversively hilarious – these stories are part Daniil Kharms, part-Lydia Davis – while also managing to be singularly Joanna Walsh; how her writing always manages to make everything else I read (and write) seem specious and frivolous.’ Sara Baume
‘Worlds from the Word’s End is an anti-mainstream collection. Joanna Walsh’s thick, blurred and claustrophobic worlds deal with deconstruction, estrangement, silence and the disappearance of common language. This is unconventional writing that is going to enchant unconventional readers.’ Dubravka Ugrešić
April 2017, Visual Editions/Google Creative Lab
Seed is the craziest thing I've ever made.
An experimental digital novella created in collaboration with Visual Editions' Editions At Play and Google Creative Lab, and illustrations by Charlotte Hicks, Seed is nonlinear narrative inspired by Cortázar's Hopscotch, Perec's Life a User's Manual, Balenstrini's Tristano, the work of Kathy Acker, B S Johnson, Ann Quin, and other experimental writers.
Seed was shortlisted for the prestigious Europe-wide Lovie Awards in the Digital Experiment and Innovation category.
Seed takes structural play into the digital realm. It tells the story of a girl on the brink of adulthood at the tail end of the 1980s. Haunted by ideas of infection - AIDS, Chernobyl and CJD - Seed’s narrator is vulnerable to, and brutalised by, her environment. With few words to describe her situation she is, like Shakespeare’s Ophelia “incapable of her own distress,” but is also capable of moments of intense joy and love.
Seed* was published on 11 April 2017, and is free to read online.
*WARNING, THERE IS A CONSTRAINT IN THIS BOOK.
2015/16, Dorothy, Tramp, And Other Stories
Vertigo was shortlisted for the 2017 Edgehill Story Prize.
Starred review at Kirkus: "sentences that can make your heart stop. A feat of language."
Flavorwire: "One of the English-language debuts of the year... Walsh’s Vertigo may redistribute the possibilities of contemporary fiction."
LA Times: "Renata Adler's "Speedboat" with a faster engine."
The Believer's Best Books of 2015: "Supple, floating stories that unfold like memories almost too painful to recall."
The Irish Examiner: "Her passion for writing, her intensity and seriousness for her craft, and her sheer almost overwhelming intelligence, come as no surprise. Vertigo, a quite extraordinarily accomplished piece of work."
The Guardian: "Beautifully simple and unembellished, Walsh’s writing – most captivating in its ability to unnerve – is cleverly revealing."
Sydney Review of Books: " Vertigo is a slim but deadly volume."
The Financial Times: "Walsh’s writing has intellectual rigour and bags of formal bravery... Hotel is a boldly intellectual work that repays careful reading"
Chris Kraus, author of I Love Dick: "It's a knock out. Completely engaging, juicy and dry - such a great book."
The Paris Review:"a slim, sharp meditation on hotels and desire."
The New Statesman: "It is elliptical and associative, moving like quicksilver from one thing to the next... This is bold, risky writing, but Walsh is deft with fluidity."
The Rumpus: "there’s more linguistic play in here, more aphorisms you want to copy onto a postcard and send to your unhappiest smart friend."
GROW A PAIR
2015, Readux Books
Marina Warner in The Guardian: "surreal, bawdy and inventive (wickedly so)."
The Erotic Review: "like The Bloody Chamber after a couple of gins... swollen with surreal eroticism and a weird, lavish imagination."
The Times Literary Supplement: "a collection of hilarious, nimbly interlinked “fairy tales about sex”. It reminded me of Nicholson Baker’s House of Holes, only Walsh’s book is shorter (a good thing in this case), dirtier and even funnier."
Julian Gough: "Joanna Walsh is one of the funniest, most subversive writers out there. "Grow A Pair" rocks... Grow a Pair has the delicious, deadpan lunacy of some prime JG Ballard, but sexier & funnier... I attended the launch. One of the funniest readings I've ever been at."
2013, 3:AM Press
Fractals is out of print.
Deborah Levy, Newwriting.net: For those interested in new innovations in short fiction, I highly recommend Fractals by Joanna Walsh.
Gary Perry, Foyles: One of the best short story collections I've ever read.
Will Rees, TLS: Walsh's closest literary ally is probably Lydia Davis, with whom she shares a brevity and starkness of expression... Walsh's refreshing humour - sometimes biting; sometimes absurd... lends her work a poingnancy that is genuinely affecting. (Will Rees, The Times Literary Supplement)
April 2018, Semiotext(e)/Tuskar Rock
‘A smart, allusive meditation on longing, on solitude, on the lure of cities and on the sheer fragility of experience and feeling’
‘This luminous philosophical novel casts dye into the spaces between things, the gaps between certainties, colours them visible, valuable. Sometimes these take the form and hue of a train journey, or time spent in a city, or the pause between two emails. Sometimes you could call them love’
Lauren Elkin, author of Flâneuse
'A novel about love in digital spaces that takes the time to breathe, exhaling into the muggy air of real places. A bereft protagonist is consoled by the energy of philosophical fragments and messy objects. Walsh has surgical expertise in the dissection of online excitements and misdirections but puts us in the sensual world of Dior lipsticks and perfecto jackets. The result is bracing. it’s a new real where our emotions are always betwixt and between our devices and what feels like the ache in our heart.'
Sherry Turkle, Professor of the Social Studies of Science, MIT. Author, Evocative Objects: Things We Think With
I was awarded an Arts Foundation Fellowship for the manuscript of Break.up.
Please get in touch with me for review copies, interview requests etc using the form at the bottom of this page.
I am a writer of fiction, and non-fiction, a journalist, campaigner, and doctoral student.
I was awarded the 2017 Arts Foundation Fellowship for Literature (Creative Non-Fiction). I have twice been a Webby Honoree (2008 and 2019), and once a Lovie Honoree (2019) for my digital narrative work.
Besides my books, my writing has been published in Granta Magazine, The Dalkey Archive Best European Fiction 2015, gorse journal, The Stinging Fly, The Dublin Review, Best British Short Stories 2014 & 2015, and many others.
I was on the 2016 Goldsmiths Prize panel and have also judged awards for the Scottish Book Trust, and Galley Beggar. I was 2016/17 Writer-in-Residence at Maynooth University, Ireland and the 2018 Burgess Centenary Fellow at the University of Manchester.
I'm currently working on a CHASE-funded PhD in Creative and Critical writing at the University of East Anglia.
I have worked as an editor at 3:AM Magazine, Catapult.co, and gorse editions.
I founded and ran @read_women (2014-18), for which I won Women In Publishing's 2014 New Venture Award, and which the New York Times called 'a rallying cry for the equal treatment of women writers'. I currently run the Twitter-based campaign @noentry_arts.
I am an experienced chair and speaker, and have planned and participated in events for a wide range of bookshops, festivals, and conferences, including l'Insitut Francais, The Wellcome Institute, Peirene Press, The South Bank, The Cambridge Festival of Ideas, Shakespeare & Company Bookshop, Paris and the Melbourne Writers' Festival.
I am a visual artist. My work has appeared in publications ranging from The Economist to the New York Times, Die Woche to Penguin Books, plus large-scale projects at The Tate Modern and The Wellcome Institute.
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