Originality is hated and pretended, but the real thing is beautiful
Praise for Heart of the Original from Alan Moore, creator of the V for Vendetta, Watchmen and Promethea comics:
"Force-fed with ideas until its liver explodes, this staggeringly brilliant book has scarcely a line in it that won’t make you wish you’d thought of it first. Raising the bar to the point where it’s a hazard to migrating birds, this is a sizzling and hilarious manifesto where its author means every blazing word, and which makes a case for the caged-animal repetitive behaviour of our culture that cannot be argued against by anyone with an honest bone in their head. Written in his own brains, Heart of the Original should be tattooed on the backs of all the limp re-imaginers currently crowding our TV screens, our multiplexes and our surviving bookshops. Probably the most astonishing thing that you will read during this otherwise lacklustre incarnation."
'Nothing new under the sun' is an order, not an observation - and one driven by a strange unspoken fear of genuine originality. Heart of the Original is about the professed desire for originality and the actual revulsion toward it, why the same idea is repeatedly hailed as a breakthrough, how to locate original ideas by thinking spatially, why almost any situation is improved by a berserking hen, why obvious outcomes are declared unexpected or 'unthinkable', why history is allowed to repeat, and whether humanity wants to survive - true originality increases a planet’s options. As well as a secret history of where and when certain ideas appeared first, it’s a creativity manual and a rich piece of satire.
Those who burst out thinking in public encounter not only sarcasm and physical aggression but a total lack of legal recourse. I explain how to 'pass' among the mentally dead while remaining alive. This zombie camouflage involves more than merely looking happy.
Real creativity is a ferocity of consciousness. It can be as small as the firestarter spark produced by two words that have never been next to each other before or as stomach-rolling as translating yourself sideways into adjacent dimensions, a nearly-simple rotation of the soul which leaves you radiant with scorn and the precocious levels of seemingly casual opting-out only previously achievable on a framework of pumped, high-tensile resentment. You may even live a life with repercussions. When excluded from human society, don’t stop to get it in writing. You are free.
'Originality irritates so obscurely you may have to evolve to scratch it.' - Jeff Lint
It’s an old idea that if we got enough people spinning in their graves we could use it as a power source, whole graveyards forming a turbine array. But since the spin-action depends on a preoccupation with other people’s business and opinions, have you wondered how much energy you would produce?
Those who match nothing but themselves rarely notice the hairpin turns of external decree. They think in the rich syntax that results from living life in the wrong order. Fashion is a set of time’s petty ordinances, local laws we submit to through inherited consent. In this environment truth is as loud as a photograph of a violin and originality both feared and slandered as legend. Nothing much interesting happens amid a conformity so innate it cannot clearly perceive or discuss itself.
Before the satirist Bierce threw his phone into the volcano he talked about ‘our resolutely stalled evolution’. A great one for affable scorn, he was admired to within an inch of his life. Like Twain, he had noticed that giving the same argument while wearing different trousers gave the illusion of varied insight.
Acceleration Nectar - Aylett Patreon channel
Thursday, 3 September 2015
I have a Patreon channel called Acceleration Nectar which is here -
Monday, 27 July 2015
Just got some copies of the special hardback edition. It's very gold and weird! A good thing.
Subscribers who paid for a hb should get their copies over the next few days, and subscribers' kindle version should be activated around the same time. I love the book. I hope you find it's worth the very long wait - thanks for your extreme patience and support. :8)
Saturday, 16 May 2015
Copies of HEART OF THE ORIGINAL are scheduled to arrive in the warehouse at the end of July and should be mailed out to subscribers shortly after.
Bloomsbury Theatre show with Robin Ince
Thursday, 20 November 2014
I'll be talking about ideas from HEART OF THE ORIGINAL at the Bloomsbury Theatre on Dec 20 and 21 in "Ghost of Christmas Present" show with Robin Ince, Stewart Lee, Josie Long & pals - https://www.thebloomsbury.com/event/run/141215
Saturday, 15 November 2014
HEART OF THE ORIGINAL is at 96% - force friends to buy the damn thing & get it out there!
Originality is hated and pretended, but the real thing is beautiful. HEART OF THE ORIGINAL tells you why people behave the way they do around originality, and the fun you can have making people behave that way. It's a creativity manual, a satire and a relief…
Monday, 6 October 2014
“The story is still told that Carlos Castaneda heard of the Aztec god Quetzalcoatl and mistakenly worshipped an axolotl, an antlered albino tadpole the size of a parsnip. For two years the cute smile of the drifting creature convinced him he was onto something, until he realised he was projecting and turned his gaze to a broader screen. The story is challenged because, after all, who could believe…
Wednesday, 10 September 2014
Bob Kaufman was redacted from Beat histories for being often on the street and always black. His works were the colour-treated nebulae of an outlawed space project, rendered in a noise-to-signal euphoria. Busted for being, he sent his eyes away like snails to bring back glints of fiasco and emerged saying more than he knew. One time his head gave off a subway spark, wounding his shoulder. His red…
Parable of the banquet
Thursday, 21 August 2014
"The parable of the great banquet, in which the diners’ arms are splinted and fitted with forks four feet long so that they cannot reach the food up to their mouths, leads to the obvious solution of the diners feeding each other and then hunting down and punishing whoever set up this diabolical torture so that it cannot happen to others. After all, they’re armed. But though we all think it, I have…
Alan Moore on HEART OF THE ORIGINAL
Wednesday, 6 August 2014
ALAN MOORE on HEART OF THE ORIGINAL:
"Steve Aylett, not just streets ahead but whole maps ahead, has unwisely elected to demonstrate his effortless superiority by biting his own head off and swallowing it: with Heart of the Original he presents a compelling argument for the public’s phobic aversion to originality and yet, stupidly, does this in a completely original way. Force-fed with ideas until…
Accelerated HEART rate
Tuesday, 22 July 2014
HEART OF THE ORIGINAL in 7 seconds (have fun with the pause).
Buy & fund it here - http://unbound.co.uk/books/heart-of-the-original/
HEART reading July 19
Friday, 11 July 2014
I'll be reading bits from Heart of the Original at this event on July 19 -
There'll also be a few things for sale such as Novahead, Rebel at the End of Time, Fain, and Caterer comics. See you there.
Where to start?
Thursday, 3 July 2014
Where do you start a story?
“Standard practice is to start a narrative in the middle, when things are already happening, but starting as events reach a conclusion or their aftermath cuts down on length and hones discipline. Logically the later you leave it the more information you’ll cram, so starting after the universe ends should cover all bases, but in practice this disappoints all but the general…
Aylett on Artaud
Monday, 19 May 2014
Born and counting, Antonin Artaud studied the world as if facing his accuser, seizing and turning to account each street and field presented to him. He had a face like a wet kestrel and more worries than a shaved lion in a rental car. His appetite for honesty had him digesting his own bones. Many put his desire for a ‘body without organs’ down to the fact that his own were rubbish. He struck an attitude…
Thursday, 15 May 2014
Certain ceremonial masks of Subsaharan Africa portray expressions of astonishment and provide relief from having to repeatedly fake surprise at the same things – an energy-saving bliss reserved for the tribal shaman. Cultures which ban such masks through a prohibition against graven images are predictably scandalised at everything, including their own legs. The wearily exasperated look on the faces…
Wednesday, 5 March 2014
When the American genocide began, the invaders were free to smash upward into something new but instead made a preface of repeating everything Europe had done, giving special emphasis to the garbage. This stale gauntlet reached a pitch with Henry James, who prayed before a silver semicolon and exercised a restraint so radical he imploded, taking a tornado of teak furniture and thousands of readers…
Short term memory
Thursday, 20 February 2014
As knowledge retention is reduced, historical repetition threatens to catch up. If repetition intervals ever become shorter than mass memory, facts will be learnt through being too constantly in-your-face to deny. It’s been questioned whether such a catch-up can ever happen to humanity, either because memory shrinkage is propelled by fear, or because after acknowledging the obvious we will no longer…
Thursday, 6 February 2014
Compression and direction of force are key in getting the full effect from your work. The shape of the piece determines its over-all arc of projection, as when a broad base of assumptions propels the sharpest elements away from it in a wide span. The environment itself, if rigid, can often add to compression and so to the subsequent force of an incendiary charge. How to punish those who declare that…
Thursday, 5 December 2013
The coelacanth, a dinosaur fish thought long extinct, became a media sensation when fishermen caught one in 1938. Known for its Clanger armour and merry smile, the coelacanth is now thought to bestow luck on those who catch it, especially those into whom it sinks its needle-like teeth. Yet what if it had never been thought dead? Sailors would probably kick it away with a bitter curse, calling it…
Wednesday, 28 August 2013
Me in May 2013. Only seconds after this photo was taken I was attacked by eleven doves, each with the face of Benjamin Disraeli. It was a helluva thing.
Wednesday, 28 August 2013
By the time solar power was rediscovered by Leonardo da Vinci his urge to 'think new thoughts and bring new things into being' meant that while other people were eating their own snot he was anatomising elephants and inventing the hang glider. He even managed to squeeze the classic Vituvian Man out of an incident when a naked moron climbed onto his skylight. Born illegitimate, da Vinci had been spared…
Love and books
Monday, 29 July 2013
These people are helping to fund Heart of the Original.