Liz Worth’s Spooky Shelves and Many Ouija Boards

Shelf Esteem is a weekly measure of the books on the shelves of writers, editors, and other word lovers, as told to Emily M. Keeler. This week’s shelf belongs to Liz Worth, whose first novel, Post Apoc, came out earlier this year. Worth’s books are in her sunny East Toronto apartment, which she shares with her friendly (and talkative!) cat, Plum. Being on a bit of an X-Files kick recently, I was thrilled to see DVDs of the series on her coffee table—all the more so when I realized that the show was the perfect jumping off point for discussing Worth’s library.

I watched The X-Files growing up, and my boyfriend had never seen them, so we’re watching them now. It’s funny, some of the episodes I remember being in love with, when I watch them now they’re not that good. But ... David Duchovny is so attractive that I really don’t care. It’s always the same thing, regardless of what happens, Scully’s always the skeptic. It doesn’t matter what happens to her or what she sees. It’s kind of a ridiculous show, actually. But some of the things they show ... they clearly did a lot of research, I can tell. With certain plotlines they know what they’re doing; I’ve read about or have books about some of the same stuff, and I’m like, Okay, that’s true, people do believe that. They put some effort into it, but it’s so flawed at the same time.

And Whore. Nelly Arcan was a Canadian writer. She died a couple years ago. She was a French writer, based in Montreal. This one’s very sexual, and it was very critically acclaimed. She was playing around a lot with structure. It’s unfortunate that her career was cut short. She died so young—she killed herself. This one is kind of like Little Cat. People might feel like there’s no plot, but there’s still a story there. It’s not someone bringing you through different scenes, and saying this happened and then this happened, but it’s still all tied together. It feels really cohesive, but still very loose at the same time. I love stuff like that.

Shelf Esteem runs every Tuesday.