The Facts of Late Winter
The new feature on the site, "Diversity Then!," by the novelist Paul La Farge, looks at the sensational faits divers penned by Félix Fénéon in the early 20th century. La Farge mentions that such swift, lurid accounts—poems in small—inspired everyone from Stendhal to Duras to the Surrealists, but modestly leaves out his own book, The Facts of Winter (2005).
This most peculiar volume, his translation of the forgotten writer Paul Poissel, takes the faits divers into the realm of dreams by way of elegant Rousselian procedurals. I won't say any more, save that the title is a homonymic translation (or translated homonym?) of faits divers—i.e., faits d'hiver, the facts of winter—and that I've never read anything quite like it.
Ed Park is the author of the novel Personal Days (Random House, 2008) and a founding editor of The Believer. His work most recently appears in Bound to Last: 30 Writers on Their Most Cherished Book (Da Capo). He blogs at The Dizzies.