In an upcoming edition of McSweeney’s, novelist Michael Chabon will publish the first four chapters of Fountain City–a “wrecked” novel Chabon abandoned in 1992. The booklet-sized paperback is 93 pages long, including author annotations and a poster jacket of a Leon Krier painting.
In the preface to the paperback (pictured), Chabon described the 1,500-page manuscript about “a poetically sad young man who apprenticed himself to a visionary, postmodern architect.” McSweeney’s 36 will be released on December 7th–a 275-cubic-inch box containing writings from debut novelist Adam Levin, actor Jesse Eisenberg, and author Colm Toibin.
We wish more writers would give us a glimpse of abandoned manuscripts. Chabon offered aspiring writers some advice about advances (which he admitted he didn’t follow). Here’s an excerpt: “Don’t take advances; sell your work only when it is complete. A monetary obligation to one’s publisher places all kinds of undue pressure, both subtle and overt, on the writer, chief among them the aforementioned pressure to persist on a f***ed project well beyond the point of reason.”