There’s a rare chance to catch Will in the States this week – tonight at 7pm he’ll be at a free event at Harvard Book Store, 1256 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA, 02138; on Thursday at 7.30pm he’ll be reading from Phone with Martin Amis at 92ND STREET Y, Unterberg Poetry Center, 1395 Lexington Ave, New York, NY, 10128; and on Saturday at 6pm he’ll be at: Politics and Prose book store, 5015 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington DC, 20008.
Listen to Will talking about the countryside at the 2hr 56min point on yesterday’s Today programme here.
Will has produced another flurry of A Point of View broadcasts on Radio 4 recently: Ode to Space, Men Against Women, The miserable pantomime of contemporary British vegetarianism and Mass Myopia.
The FT said Phone is “A novel of grand ideas, powered by a ravenous curiosity about the role of the technological revolution in our private and public woes, Phone nonetheless bristles with anxiety about the abuse of ‘intelligence’ — in medicine, in warfare, in software, in love … [Self’s] hurricane of eloquence blows in terrific passages of satire, comedy, even suspense — not to mention his pitch-perfect ear for the jargons and lingoes of modernity.”
Listen to Will talking for about half an hour on Afternoon Edition (available for 28 days) on BBC Radio 5 live here at the 1hr 11 minute mark, taking in the “muted” general election, autism, how the smartphone has changed us and finishing his trilogy of modernist novels with Phone in which “a new technology is visited upon us and a new conflict ensues and what ensues from that … is a new form of mental illness”. He also reveals that he’ll be recording an audiobook of Phone and that his next book will be a memoir.
Wednesday 24 May: 6pm, International Literature Festival Dublin, Smock Alley Theatre, 6/7 Exchange Street Lower, Temple Bar, Dublin. (This event is being recorded for broadcast on The Book Show for RTÉ Radio 1.)
Tuesday 30 May: Radio 5 Live Afternoon Edition live interview. Later that evening, Radio 4 Front Row live interview.
Friday 2 June: 5.30pm, Hay festival, Tata Tent.
Tuesday 13 June: 7pm-8.30pm, Guardian Live in conversation with John Mullan, Islington Assembly Hall.
Thursday 29 June: 8pm, Hebden Bridge arts festival, Town Hall HX7 7BY.
Friday 30 June: 7pm, City Books, Ropetackle arts centre, High St, Shoreham-by-Sea, West Sussex.
Will Self is going to be joined by Dr Sarah Wollaston MP, Richard Burgon MP, Nigel Farage MEP, and Louise Mensch on Question Time tonight on BBC1 at 10.45pm.
I have a confession to make: I was approached by the people who brought the case in the high court over the government’s right to trigger Article 50 without a parliamentary vote. They asked me if I’d consider writing an independent opinion to be included in the dossier handed to the justices – and I declined. I can’t actually find the email I sent to them but the general tenor of my refusal was: ça suffit!