Dear Wes Anderson,
I heard you took the train from
Chicago to southern California.
I thought it was kind of cute to hear
you don't like airplanes. They scare
me too, somewhat, but not enough
so that I can't ride them. . .
THE WES LETTERS is an epistolary novel written from three friends to the elusive Wes Anderson. The story begins on a train and multiplies, composes, and fragments itself across the United States to Finland. It's about personal memory, it's about gossip and philosophy, and it's about pop culture and late capitalism. It's (not) about Wes Anderson. It's a generational vacuum full of hope and embarrassment.
Details aside, memory's a dodgy thing and if you don't remember me, well, I don't blame you. I imagine you meet billions of people every year and they're all impeccably dressed. One of my mottos - not that I am a motto kind of a guy - is to be memorable. At least, that's one of the secret performances I have in the works. I want to be ridiculously present, crystal clear without daydreams. So present I infect people's minds and all of the sudden everyone is performing outside-Brett. In this way, I can slip off and assume other identities, tricksterlike. . .
I'm sitting on our living room futon while Brett explains the situation of meeting you on the train. Apparently, the person you were with writes children books. I hear words like aristocracy and kings. Our friend asks him questions like "did you tell him it's 'HUN-day'?" Apparently you and your girlfriend asked Brett what he reads and what he thinks about trains. Obviously you and Brett have a lot in common. How rustic chic, Wes, especially on a train while sipping chardonnay, poking at your duck, staring out onto the plains that speed past into a blur while talking about literature. . .
Dear Wes Anderson,
I was thinking about you again because we all got together to celebrate Brett's birthday. There were a whole bunch of us and we made a fire at the beach and drank wine from the bottle. We bought two bags of Doritos and several pounds of grocery store fried chicken. Strangers also had fires going. Their fires were bigger, but ours lasted the longest. When the strangers left, we found a hooked metal implement and stole the burning wood from their abandoned fires. We walked the burning logs along the beach and fed them to our fire, and we caroused and, at times, we spoke of you. . .
"Writing into the sand hole that is 'Wes Anderson,' three friends write their way almost to the limit of their engagingly ambivalent and indisputably brilliant personalities, thereby calling into question the certainty of anything. Follow their quest to the Fin/n/ish line! A gripping read."
- Chris Kraus, I Love Dick
"THE WES LETTERS seems destined to find its place among other recent classics of the epistolary novel narrated by smart, anxious, and questing narrators. . . but its triangular structure is all its own, as are its particular obsessions: transference, celebrity, friendship, changing technologies of writing, and the various relations - be they pained, productive, or pleasurable - between performativity and 'something like honesty,' if not honesty itself."
- Maggie Nelson
"Dear Wes Anderson - Each film you make is a secret letter to the viewer, and each letter in THE WES LETTERS is a secret view into you. These letters are innovations of you, the authors' lives chronicled through apostrophe, radiant stylistic gymnastics, philosophies in flight - these letters are relentless and resplendent. You won't regret reading this book, Wes Anderson, it's hardly about you at all."
- xo Lily Hoang
"an extremely involving, profound, and generally brilliant character study"
- Jordan Blum at The Lit Pub
The Wes Letters
by Feliz Lucia Molina, Ben Segal
and Brett Zehner
$16.00 paperback ISBN 9781937402648
$9.99 ebook ISBN 9781937402655
Available at these fine booksellers:
And at local and online booksellers everywhere