Snuff by Chuck Palahniuk
I just got an advance copy of Chuck Palahniuk’s new book, Snuff (Published by Doubleday on May 20, 2008.) http://www.amazon.com/Snuff-Chuck-Palahniuk/dp/038551788
Here is my February 13, 2004 review of Palahniuk’s visit to Las Vegas.
People started lining up four hours before the reading. The mob had overflowed to capacity forcing fans to watch the reading on a closed-circuit monitor in the library's basement. You were given a ticket if you wanted something signed. Even with a pre-reading signing, Palahniuk stayed until 11:30 P.M. signing copies of his books, Fight Club DVD's, and posters. The reading had ended at 8:30 PM.
Palahniuk's fans adore him.
Average age of fan: 21 years old. Pre-teens were there. Two pre-teens had 6-inch high shades of green mohawks. Someone was wearing a gas mask. Kids had copies of Playboy magazine (that I had just gotten in the mail that morning).
I was forewarned that Palahniuk was going to read one of his most disgusting, vile stories, the one that has already caused 39 people to faint. It is called "Guts." You can read it in the latest issue of Playboy magazine. Better yet, go to the official Palahniuk fansite and hunt down a reading by him.
It is vile. It is pure agony to sit through. It is deliciously vulgar. Number 40 fainted.
Even though my husband has often condemned the movie Fight Club as having "no socially redeeming values," he begrudgingly came along. Unfortunately for him, the Las Vegas-Clark County Public Library was closed. He had to listen to the reading held in the library's large auditorium. He was furious every time I shouted and clapped.
He was appalled: "That guy is very disturbed, but entertaining. I hope Portland is keeping a file on him."
Palahniuk gained notoriety in 1996 with the publication of his book Fight Club. He has since written six novels including best-sellers Choke, Lullaby, and Diary. Palahniuk read Chapter Six from Fight Club, which was the first thing he wrote. He then read a "postcard" he wrote for a travelogue on Portland. Then came "Guts."
For the Q&A, Palahniuk came out with two huge boxes filled with rubber hacked-off legs dripping blood and exposing bone. Each questioner got one. A young fan asked Palahniuk when he was agreeing to accept fan mail. Apparently, Palahniuk has placed a moratorium on fan mail. He said he didn't know when, but for a few days he will accept, read and answer fan mail. He checks postmarks. The mail is so daunting; Palahniuk must be in a certain state of mind. There is an underground network waiting for the slim-days period to be announced. There is not much notice given.
I've started my letter to Palahniuk. I want to be ready when the alarm sounds.
Palahniuk is a very seductive personality and this was an opportunity to see how a young speaker enthralls his audience. He has tapped in, like Eminem, to the masturbatory dread of his young male audience. He reveals secrets. He proudly flaunts a necklace of obsessed horrors.
Palahniuk was having a great time. A friend, sitting next to me, hoped Palahniuk would sign his copy of Fight Club with his signature comment: "To the best cellmate ever!"
If you want to see an author’s fan base cult, go to http://www.chuckpalahniuk.net/community/showthread.php?threadid=31886
Chuck has family in Las Vegas, so why isn’t he holding a Snuff book signing here?
Even in the heyday of the UFO abduction craze, I was always critical of the claims. I was especially appalled at the copious tears and statements of sexual abuse onboard the UFO spacecrafts. Didn’t anyone bother to ask a few scientific questions of the crew or medical technicians?
If I were abducted nightly, I would go to sleep with a camera taped to my chest. I wrote extensively about the failure of abductees to bring back any useful information – all the abductees ever said, and continue to say, is that they are told this: “You have to stop destroying your planet.”
And, “All you need is love.”
I was part of a New York group who always went out looking to be abducted. I was vocal – Why not me? I was ready, willing and able. But it seemed the only people who got abducted were fat women and men who cried.
No one ever bothered to collect any forensic data. (My MUFON magazine article was called “Forensic Abduction Research (FAR)”. I take bragging rights for bringing this
glaring omission forward to the UFO Community.
You can thank me for the bits of junk that are now claimed as alien artifacts taken from victims bodies. But, alas, no alien sperm has ever been swabbed!
Now that we are living in a CSI world, you don’t hear much about aliens invading bedrooms – there would be trace evidence – as we all know from watching CSI Miami and TruTV. Sex with aliens? No one – except me – ever wrote about the need for a rape kit.
There has never been an alien rape reported to a Rape Crisis Center. Why not? If it’s not a nightmare but a reality, I would go straight to the emergency room of a hospital. I’d file a police report.
I left the UFO community in disgust over how outrageous the claims became. It became a game of “I can top your abduction story.” Women were having multiple babies by alien kings and alien-orchestrated sex orgies. There were the orange-tinted aliens, the Lizard Men, the sex-starved alien bug-women, and the evil Reptilians.
There was a spaceship medical waiting room without magazines!
Yes, I’m still bitter and still waiting my turn.
Snuff by Chuck Palahniuk (Doubleday. $24.95. 197 pages). My friend David Whitten co-produced Sex: The Annabel Chong Story (1999). Annabel Chong is famous for ending her porn career by starring in The World's Biggest Gangbang, wherein she had sex with 251 men in 10 hours.
When we moved from Santa Fe to Las Vegas, FilmsInReview’s editor-in-chief Roy Frumkes introduced us to the Whittens.
I haven’t seen Sex: The Annabel Chong Story, but David’s then wife Suzanne became Annabel’s traveling companion and best friend during the filming. (Miss Chong wouldn’t be my idea of a best friend, but Suzanne is very sweet). An online review of Sex said this: “Annabel is a rabid spokesperson for feminist rights, she seems really nice in person, spends time with her family, and has some of the worst teeth in show biz. But the strangest part is that Annabel doesn't seem to be in it for the money. In fact, she still doesn't have the 10 grand for her "performance" in Gangbang, which she continually expresses nothing but nostalgia over, saying it was a glorious "moment" she experienced between the men and herself.”
Snuff is devastatingly vulgar, obscene, and it was hard for me to put down. Palahniuk once again will alienate new readers and continue expanding his cult deification. He has not gone soft, or aged. His rabid cult – mostly young men - will now know everything they ever wanted to know about the porn business in horrifying detail.
There’s no other way, so let’s just say that Palahniuk is doing Western society a service.
Palahniuk has given his fans exactly what they have been yearning for. And Palahniuk, regardless of his now-acknowledged sexual preference, has spent a great deal of time looking at straight porn. He’s a porn historian. Perhaps even a porn scholar.
Aging porn queen Cassie Wright is out to beat Annnabel Chong’s gang bang record. Six hundred men have answered the ad and are waiting their turn in a “green room” for their 2 minutes with Cassie. We get to hear from a few of them thorough the chapters named after them: There’s Mr. 137, Mr. 72 (he thinks he’s Cassie’s abandoned son) and then there is Mr. 600. Mr. 600 got Cassie into porn, raped her, and could be Mr. 72’s father. Or not.
Most, excluding of course, Mr. 72, are hoping Cassie will drop dead of an embolism and the last dude with her will make history. He’ll be the Sirhan Sirhan of porn.
I’ve learned a lot from Snuff about the porn industry, porn stars and, incredibly, the beauty tips of 30s and 40s movie stars.
No one stumbles on a book by Chuck Palahniuk. He’s only for the initiated.
Palahniuk’s intense fan base was launched after his book Fight Club became a movie in 1998. This August, Palahniuk’s book Choke, directed by Clark Gregg, and starring Sam Rockwell, hits theaters. Amazon.com: Snuff: Chuck Palahniuk: Books Choke Screening at CineVegas. On June 20, I’ll be seeing Choke at the 2008 CineVegas Film Festival. The Tenth Annual CineVegas Film Festival will honor Anjelica Huston with its Marquee Award. Don Cheadle, Rosario Dawson, Viggo Mortsensen and Sam Rockwell will each be honored with a Half-Life Award for the work they have done thus far in their careers. The honorees will participate in moderated conversations, which are open to the public, on Friday, June 20 and Saturday, June 21. The awards will be given out on Friday, June 20 at the CineVegas Honorees Reception, to be held at the Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino pool.
Huston and Rockwell costar in Choke. Expect a huge crowd. But why doesn’t CineVegas invite Chuck?