shiv kotecha 

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Shiv Kotecha is a writer, editor, and teacher living in New York. He is the author The Switch (Wonder, 2018), in which two poems and a suite of stories make a case for friendship over love, and EXTRIGUE (Make Now, 2015), in which the mise-en-scène of Billy Wilder’s noir Double Indemnity is rendered into a procedural novel of objects. His writing appears in publications including 4Columns, Aperture, ArtforumBOMB, frieze, The Nation, MUBI’s Notebook, and The Poetry Project Newsletter. For the Andy Warhol Foundation Arts Writers Grant, he co-edits Cookie Jar, a pamphlet series of experimental arts writing. He is Co-Chair of the Writing Discipline for Bard MFA—Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts.

recent writing:

› essay: “PACBI Now,” co-written with Rainer Diana Hamilton, The New Inquiry
› essay: “Sore Feeling: Revisiting The Dreamers,” frieze
› poem: “Untitled Frustration Poem,Ursula
› essay: Close Ups: On SPT’s Bay Area Shorts, The Back Room
› essay: Be Strong Bernadette: On Memory, Poetry Project Newsletter
› review: Pacific Club by Valentin Noujaïm, Artforum 
› poem: “TMThe Recluse

› essay: Hervé Guibert’s Last Laugh, The Nation 


some criticism

› review: Be Brave to Things by Jack Spicer, Poetry Project Newsletter
› profile: Tony Cokes, frieze.

› interview: Bassem Saad, BOMB
› essay: “In the Air”: on filmmaker Mrinal Sen, MUBI Notebook
› essay: on Zoe Leonard’s Downtown (For Douglas), Aperture
› essay: on O Fantasma (2000), 4Columns
› review: Carl Craig’s Party/Afterparty, 4Columns
› review: Darrel Ellis’s A Composite Being, frieze
› essay: “Out of Earshot”: on Asha Bhosle, frieze
› essay: “Operations of Pleasure”: on artist Nayland Blake, frieze
› essay: “”It’s time you became a refugee!’” on Ritwik Ghatak, frieze 

The Switch (Wonder, 2018)

The Switch is a book in three parts:

1. “I’m Sorry Shiv. I’m Sorry Diana”: an apology for friendship and desire, in fiction and verse

2. “Obedience Residency Manual”: the result of a self-imposed residency

3. “The Unlovable”: a long poem by an angry god


Shiv Kotecha does for the word fucking what Catullus did for the word kissing.  In The Switch, desire travels everywhere to its surprisingly specific destinations—to body parts aroused in their fashion, like a saint’s skull or a cock.  Here love is as artificial as a courtly dialogue, and deeply felt, even spiritual.  Here the arousal of the fragmented body is contemporary practice.  Is one allowed to write such a book?  Among the spectacular effects and turns and startling intimacies in The Switch, the most daring is its no-holds-barred pursuit of love.

Shiv Kotecha’s deeply weird and affecting book The Switch works with prosaic measure and measured prose to compress the mess of everyday sexual feeling, the mess of everyday relating (both on and off the planet of the genital) into these often perfect lines

“Poetry is never lost in a politics of refusal, and even in the most flirtatious behavioral studies of human and nonhuman desire for connection ... Kotecha’s ballast is clearly his feeling for the radiance of form-switching itself”

“it consists of an easy-to-read novel.“
―CLARA LOU, Book and Film Globe

Book design: Holly Melgard

Corina Copp, Editors Pick at BOMB
Charlie Markbreiter at The Believer
Rachel Vallen’s Winter Poetry Select at TANK
Clara Luo at Book and Film Globe
Katherine Beaman at Common Place Review

EXTRIGUE (Make Now Books, 2015)

EXTRIGUE is a book-length poem which renders the mise-en-scène of Billy Wilder’s 1944 noir Double Indemnity into an inventory of objects and actions. The book is composed of 419 numbered sections, each of which refer to the sequence of shots of Wilder’s film.  

Purchase @ SPD or Make Now Books

PDF: Download

Like a post-conceptual Pompeii, Shiv Kotecha’s EXTRIGUE archives the rubble of language as forensics. Freud's Little Hans meets Lynch's Mullholland Drive. EXTRIGUE works repetition and perception in order to collapse time. Through his numbered sequencing of the human stain, Kotecha pulls us into an endless present: “345. A FLAME THAT FADES INTO A PHONE A MAN THAT FADES INTO A MAN A LAMP THAT FADES INTO A BOOK SMOKE THAT FADES INTO A HAT.“ EXTRIGUE, outside of self, is the canoptic jar of the now.

“If the items (numbered) in EXTRIGUE resemble Objects, Rooms, and Foods we’ve grown accustomed to in Stein’s Tender Buttons, it is because PAUSE is the tenderest button of them all. She never could have known.”
―DIVYA VICTOR, The Poetry Foundation

Book design: Holly Melgard

Press: Pause is the tenderest button: On Shiv Kotecha's EXTRIGUE“ by Divya Victor


› essay: history of the nipple piercing, Gayletter 16.
› essay: “Outliving Birds” for Interlude Docs
› convo: Favorite Books (with Diana Hamilton), Peach.
› “I saved this for you” Poetry Project workshop course packet
› stream: Joy and Share w/ Joey Yearous-Algozin, Montez Press
› film archive: Shiv’s Light (ongoing), hosted by

photo credit: mary manning