Spring 2017 from Bloomsbury
Shopping malls may be one of the more ubiquitous places of contemporary life in consumer culture—yet do we know what they really are? Matthew Newton takes his readers on a journey at once personal and cultural, architectural and fictive, exploring the quotidian marvels as well as the seedy underbelly of this paradigmatic site, the mall. Balancing memoir with cultural analysis, Newton considers shopping malls as vast spaces, existing in various forms, in so many different places. Arguably too big to count as a single object, the shopping mall nevertheless manages to stick together as a real thing that we encounter in everyday life as well as in cultural representations. The mall is a thing full of other things, a capacious object brimming with lessons.
In Case of Emergency [BUY NOW]
By Matthew Newton
Set at the height of the Great Recession, In Case of Emergency tells a true story of personal crises—both past and present—that take place between the disparate worlds of adolescence and adulthood. Flashing between the summer of 2009 and the winter of 1994, Matthew Newton recounts his experience of working a dead-end job in the kitchen of a Holiday Inn karaoke bar and the circumstances that landed him there.
Featuring original illustrations by William Arthur and layout and design by Peter Rentz, In Case of Emergency was printed on a Risograph GR3750 using 100% recycled paper and limited to an edition of 100 copies. This is the first release from No Empire, a fledgling small press publisher based in Braddock, Pennsylvania.
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Excerpt from In Case of Emergency:
My first day on the job, a middle-aged man named Dan trained me. He was the Cheatin’ Heart’s full-time dishwasher and worked the daylight shift Monday through Friday. I was hired as his part-time relief. Dan was short and balding, the outer edges of his scalp ringed in a greasy ruffle of dark hair, with a dozen or so loose strands bridging the gap between the left- and right-side of his head. He had a cleft palate that affected the way he talked, and the scar on his lip was visible until it vanished in a seam of skin beneath his nose. Dan was one of the most pleasant men I had ever met. As he walked me through the kitchen, pointing out my station behind a slop sink and explaining how things worked, he smiled between bouts of laughing at his own jokes.
“One perk of the job,” he announced, rinsing off a plate, “you get to eat all the free food you want.” And then, as if on cue, he grabbed a half-eaten piece of breaded fish from a small stack of dirty plates one of the waitresses had just cleared from a table, and shook it in my direction as an offering.
“No thanks,” I said. “I’m not hungry.”
“Your loss,” Dan said before taking a bite.
Each afternoon when I arrived at the hotel, Dan’s wife, an obese woman who often had a cigarette in hand, parked her minivan in the fire lane while she waited for him to emerge from the back exit. Keith told me that Dan had eight kids, which seemed an impossible number to support on a dishwasher’s salary. But as I walked past the minivan each afternoon, I heard the voices of children playing in the backseat, evidence of at least part of the large family Dan was rumored to have.
(Illustration: William Arthur. Caption: Emergency Bottle.)
Death of a Good Job: A Memoir of the Great Recession
By Matthew Newton
While on vacation in the Pennsylvania mountains with his wife and three-year-old son, Matthew Newton received a voice mail from his employer. “Please call back as soon as you can,” said the man’s voice on the message. When Matthew returned the call he learned that he no longer had a job. And by the time he hung up, a new reality had emerged: Life without work. As Matthew fretted about survival and the next best steps for his family, he also discovered that he didn’t miss the job that he just lost. In fact, the news of his layoff was accompanied by an overwhelming sense of relief. As the months of unemployment wore on, however, Matthew also learned that it’s difficult to build a better future while dwelling on the misfortune of the past.
Excerpt from Death of a Good Job (Thought Catalog Books):
It turned out 30 employees were let go that day. Back in March, 30 others were let go. And before that, 25 were laid off. “All difficult but necessary actions” we were told in a group staff meeting following the first cuts. Then the company stopped convening staff meetings to talk about its problems. With its fate so intertwined with that of an automotive industry in utter turmoil, everyone feared their jobs would be next. And as the company thinned out, clusters of workers were seen crying or whispering to one another about all the changes. I would hear about certain people who were let go, people I knew. But I never recognized all the names. After awhile though, I stopped seeing certain familiar faces in the halls and realized there were many people I would not see again. And now I was one of them, reduced to another name whispered among co-workers.
When I woke that morning, it felt like I never slept. The alarm clock on my nightstand began chirping at 6 a.m. I silenced it with a smack from my hand before slowly getting out of bed. Dull gray Pittsburgh sunlight broke through the wooden shutters in my bedroom. Exhausted from the nonstop rush of adrenaline the last day, my bones and muscles ached. My spine and shoulders were tight again. All the good of my family’s mountain escape erased with a single phone call.
Full excerpt available at American Circus.
(Photograph: Thought Catalog Books. Caption: Death of a Good Job, published March 2013.)
Dungeon [BUY NOW]
Edited by Matthew Newton
Dungeon is a pocket-sized zine edited by Matthew Newton and published by Poison Control in the winter of 2006. This one-shot zine features exclusive interviews, original essays, and site-specific artwork from both emerging and established writers, photographers, illustrators, and graphic designers.
This first (and only) issue of Dungeon includes interviews with New York City photographer Peter Sutherland, British punk rock poet Attila the Stockbroker, Parisian illustrator Sophie Toulouse, and Australian street artist The Yok. The full-color gallery section also introduces the work of Owl Barnes, a musician, illustrator, and graphic designer from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Contributors include William Baume, Justin Hopper, and Matthew Newton.
Available for purchase:
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Details: Dungeon is a small format book (5.5” x 4.25”) and features over 40 pages of original artwork, interviews, and essays. The zine is staple bound and printed on 70 lb paper with 100% recycled card stock covers.
(Illustration: Owl Barnes. Caption: Variant editions of Dungeon.)
Young & Reckless
Edited by Matthew Newton
“There’s a ton of great material here. It’s not your typical fucked-up and photocopied ‘zine and should be seen as more.” -Thrasher, February 2006
Young & Reckless is an anthology of narrative nonfiction and progressive visual art that showcases work from over 25 emerging and established writers, photographers, illustrators, and graphic designers. Drawing inspiration from the unparalleled freedom of youth, this collection explores what it’s like to come of age in America — from tales of robbery, adolescent angst, and one-night stands, to high-speed car chases, fistfights, and drug-fueled benders.
Details: Handmade, individually numbered, and limited to a print run of only 250 copies, Young & Reckless was manufactured in New Kensington, Pennsylvania and production was completed in nearby Turtle Creek. Assembled using a ¼” wooden back cover, 70lb paper stock interior, 100% recycled card stock covers, and ¾” walnut wood binding, Young & Reckless was designed and edited by Matthew Newton in the summer/fall of 2004. Young & Reckless was the first book published by Poison Control and is currently out of print.
Contributors: Lisa Alisa, ESM Artificial, SFAUSTINA, Anna Balkrishna, Casey Burns, Noah Butkus, Stephen Christian, Mike Cina, Matt Clark, Timothy “Chef” Close, Benjamin Deem, Faile, Amir H. Fallah, Jeff Garcia, Roger Gastman, Maya Hayuk, Drew Heffron, Brian Holderman, Kenichi Hoshine, James Jean, Bonnie Lesko, Kate Livingston, Douglas P. Mosurock, Matthew Newton, Michelle Newton, Peter Rentz, Todd Scalise, James Shuttleworth, Bonnie Sosinavage, Tyler Stout, Peter Sutherland, David J. Weissberg, and Florencio Zavala.
(Illustration: Kenichi Hoshine. Caption: Young & Reckless, 1 of 250.)