About the writer

Wax Banks is Walter Holland, author of Phish’s A LIVE ONE for the 33-1/3 series among other books. Recently he helped his dad write his memoir, which was the best writing job he ever had. He is gainfully employed as a technical writer near Cambridge MA, where he gainfully lives. Writing this in the third person made him feel stupid.

About the blog

I’ve maintained a blog, or several, on and off for nearly 20 years — writing a metric ton during the Bush years (like so many people), much less during the Obama administration, and occasionally since. Like seemingly every idiot I read Twitter and post there but I’m trying to break that habit. I don’t use Facebook or Instagram. This is my primary online outlet.

There is no theme to this blog beyond my drifting interests, semirandomly sampled. A couple of the categories might could use explaining:

  • highweirdness. This heading collects pieces that bear directly or indirectly on a yearslong writing project of mine, a book (‘the present work’) about the antirational variously defined and characterized. I sometimes post excerpts from the manuscript here, e.g. an essay on the ouija-board poet James Merrill as crank writer. I’d like to bring the first draft home in 2022 2023.
  • wicked pack of cards. A nonrandom walk through the Major Arcana of the tarot, written during the first year of plaguetime at the height of what I came to understand as a midlife crisis. The first half-dozen posts were written a decade ago and are no longer online. I’m in the process of gathering and mutating these posts into a book with the working title The Greater Fool. It has a lot of barely-digested Jung in it, and is not really ‘about’ the tarot in any deep sense.
  • cognitivemusic. Crossover with the preceding two categories, along with some other broadly minds-related, or anyway minds-interested, short essays.
  • phishbook. In 2015 Bloomsbury released my book on Phish’s double live album A Live One as part of the wonderful 33-1/3 series. You should go right now and buy several copies. This category collects Phish- and Phishbook-related posts, e.g. rejected epigraphs and some additional personal context and a response to a fascinating Phish-related scholarly talk I went to.
  • irreal10. Greil Marcus used to do a column called ‘Real Life Rock Top 10’ which inspired the title this series of ‘listicles’ and, at least directly, nothing else. You’d think listicles would be easy but no.
  • 100words500things. I bet you can guess.

Me online

I’m waxbanks in several places online, including email (gmail.com).

I have accounts on Twitter and Mastodon. I used to write on Medium (e.g. about the X-Files). You can find some of my books on Amazon and elsewhere.

Anything else, please don’t hesitate to ask.