Alain de Botton talks to Geoff Dyer about Another Great Day at Sea.
Visual Editions is delighted to announce Another Day at Sea by Geoff Dyer, the much-anticipated first title from Writers in Residence; a collectable set of books that bring together some of the greatest writers and photographers on the planet to reveal the normally faceless organizations that shape the modern world. Visual Editions is finding a third way between books and magazines with Writers in Residence. The arresting, full-colour photography, depicting a subculture that is by turns surprising, hilarious, beautiful and insane, is by Chris Steele-Perkins, an award-winning Magnum photographer.
As a child Geoff Dyer spent long hours making and (blotchily) painting model fighter planes. So adult Geoff jumped at the chance of a residency aboard an aircraft carrier. Another Great Day at Sea chronicles Dyer’s experiences on the USS George H.W. Bush as he navigates the routines and protocols of “carrier-world,” from the elaborate choreography of the flight deck through miles of walkways and hatches to kitchens serving meals for a crew of five thousand to the deafening complexity of catapult and arresting gear. Meeting the Captain, the F-18 pilots and the dentists, experiencing everything from a man-overboard alert to the Steel Beach Party, Dyer guides us through the most AIE (acronym intensive environment) imaginable.
Underlying Dyer’s efforts to overcome the disadvantages of being the oldest, tallest (actually, second tallest), and most self-conscious person on the boat is an intense fascination with the military world. In recording daily life on board the ship, Dyer illuminates a society where discipline and conformity, dedication and optimism, become a form of self-expression. In the process it becomes abundantly clear why Geoff Dyer has been widely praised as one of the most original – and funniest – voices in literature.