New Jack Matthews Novel to be Published by Nine Point Publishing

It’s official. Nine Point Publishing has announced that it will be publishing Schopenhauer’s Will, a hybrid novel  based on the life and thoughts of Schopenhauer. Publication date is listed on the Nine Point Publishing website  in Fall 2014.

In a 2009 interview, Mr. Matthews described the project — which was published in Czech translation before it was actually published in English.

My most recent published book is SCHOPENHAUEROVA VULE, a Czech language translation of SCHOPENHAUER’S WILL, brought out by H&H Publishers in Prague. This is something of an anomaly because it has yet to be published in English (one editor rejected it, saying it was “too experimental and too cerebral” — the latter reason a rather odd one, perhaps, for rejecting a novel about a philosopher; but that’s what she said, and I have no reason to doubt her good will). Perhaps a more cogent reason, however, is the fact that the book is somewhat freakish — not exactly fiction, biography or philosophy, but a mélange of all of these (with a one-act play thrown in).

To jump the gun a bit,  here’s one of the poems (republished from  the same interview) which will appear in  the upcoming book:

Schopenhauer’s Reflections Upon Humor

	In effect, he argued that every word denotes a class,
	But the members of that class are all unique,
	tellingly different from one another--no two beetles
	are alike, no shoes or sneezes--and when we speak
	of justice, liberty, love or similar abstractions,
	who can clearly understand what then is meant?
	"Liberty" can signify mere selfishness and greed,
	And yet, the word remains the same, indifferent
	To the use it's been corrupted to promote.
	And the word "love" will never literally apply
	To more than one such passion that enflames
	The loins and lays the heart to siege.
	It's in this theory that one begins to sense
	The principle which signifies that there is irony
	Inherent simply in the way words work,
	For nothing ever named can fit the name,
	And in the soberest speech there is some quirk
	Of comical discrepancy. That irony is intrinsic
	To the very language that defines our world
	Is a proud discovery. And so it is that ever after,
	In every word we speak, the intellect hears laughter.

One final note.  This book will be print only. In a private email to me, Jack Matthews mentioned that he chose Nine Point Publishing because  it  “produces beautiful books, & I like the idea of Schop coming out elegantly attired.”

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