WORD OF GOD, THE : Or, Holy Writ Rewritten

Thomas M. Disch


As controversial as it is incontrovertible, the moving true story of His awful transformation and its awesome aftermath reveals, at long last, the hidden web that links Disch, Philip K. Dick, Western wear, the Leamington Hotel, and Eternity itself. Read it in fear and trembling. Read it, or else. 

WORD OF GOD, THE : Or, Holy Writ Rewritten

by Thomas M. Disch

ISBN: 9781892391773

Published: 2008

Available Format(s): Trade Papberback

Not since The Da Vinci Code!
The only tome ever written by God Himself!

In this compelling memoir, the first and hopefully the last of its kind, America’s most divine author reveals the intimate and shocking details of His sudden elevation to the most coveted and least understood position in the universe.

In early 2005 (A.D.), wearying of the world’s religious schisms, doctrinal heresies, and manifold editorial sins, Thomas M. Disch took matters into His own hands and became the Deity.

As controversial as it is incontrovertible, the moving true story of His awful transformation and its awesome aftermath reveals, at long last, the hidden web that links Disch, Philip K. Dick, Western wear, the Leamington Hotel, and Eternity itself. Read it in fear and trembling. But read it, or else.


Thomas M. Disch was a novelist, poet, and book critic. His work was featured in the New York Times, Entertainment Weekly, Harper’s, The Nation, and the Hudson Review of Books. Disch was a major figure of science fiction’s new-wave movement. His books included Camp Concentration, On Wings of Song, The Word of God, and The Brave Little Toaster. His nonfiction book about poetry, The Castle of Indolence, was nominated for the National Book Critics Circle Award in 1996. John Clute famously described Disch as “perhaps the most respected, least trusted, most envied, and least read of all modern first-rank SF writers.” 

Praise for Thomas M. Disch

“One of the most remarkably talented writers around.”
Washington Post Book World

 “Diversely gifted…entirely original…joyously versatile…a unique talent.”

 “When it comes to Thomas Disch, label makers scratch their heads…. This literary chameleon redefined science fiction with novels that have been compared to the best from Orwell to Huxley, wrote best-selling children’s books about talking kitchen appliances, earned censure from the Catholic Church for an off-Broadway play, published light verse, twisted the pulp conventions of gothic fiction, experimented with interactive software, and demolished the American poetry establishment, UFO cults, and other sacred cows in brilliant critical essays.”
Minneapolis Star-Tribune

“Novelist, poet, and critic, he has become a most significant literary presence.”
—American Academy of Arts and Letters

 “I must relinquish my birthright atheism, in recognition of the presence of a literary god.”
—Norman Rush, National Book Award–winning author of Mortals

Praise for The Wall of America

 “…bitter and sharp…not to be missed.”

“…darkly satirical stories that evoke laughs as they twist the knife… No subject is sacred….”
Roanoke Times

“The stories are rich, sardonic, despairing, and mischievous by turns, capable of being emotionally resonant and laugh-out-loud funny in the same breath.”
Sci Fi Magazine

“…extraordinary wit and gusto….”
LA City Beat

“Acertain mordant joie de vivre compounded equally of hard-boiled and reluctant romanticism, Schadenfreude, self-knowledge, disdain, elitism, compassion, fatalism, ingenuity, and willed naiveté.”
Barnes and Noble.com

“…a worthy volume from a writer who we really needed to be alive today, skewering hypocrisy and sometimes unearthing the sunny side of suffering.”
Los Angeles Times

“…mesmerizing…. Vivid, starkly imagined, and strikingly articulate, this disquieting
compilation is a journey that skillfully straddles the line between absurdity and irony.”
Book Buzz

“…this collection of 19 later short pieces by author and poet Disch (1940–2008) lovingly tears into the realities and fantasies of American life…. [T]hese tales show Disch at his masterful, acerbic best.”
Publishers Weekly

Visit the Thomas M. Disch website.

“Satire, sociology, religion, and biography get tossed into a blender in New Wave poet and fantasist Disch’s latest roller-coaster ride. Claiming that he himself is God, Disch (Camp Concentration) uses notions of divinity to explore his own, sometimes fictionalized life as well as modern culture, dancing in and out of the narrative and weaving in a short story that underlines and mocks the points made in bursts of biography, poetry, and no-holds-barred social commentary. Disch also brings in old grudges with fellow author Philip K. Dick, alternately harsh (condemning the ‘bitter, burnt-out, alcoholic all-American loser’ to a personalized hell) and tongue-in-cheek, but for the most part the narrative avoids getting lost in self-indulgence. The careful reader will tease out many solid truths from the tangle of humor, history, surrealism, and speculation. The density of ideas packed into this short book is as impressive as Disch’s mastery of his craft.”
Publishers Weekly, starred review

 “Movie Pitch: Bruce Almighty as a pitch-dark Charlie Kaufman dramedy…a fitting coda to a career spent perfecting the art of the unsettling. Grade: A-.”
Entertainment Weekly 

“…the kind of hairpin intellectual carnival ride old-school SF fans used to delight in.”
Los Angeles City Beat

The Word of God constructs a more complex relationship between the reader and what is read, between the implied author and the real author, and the implied reader and the real person…between reportage and fictionality, between text and pretext, than any book I can remember encountering.”
Sci Fi Weekly

 “…a whimsy with sharp teeth and serious satirical purpose, about religion, literature, sexuality, and the art of being Thomas M. Disch.”
The New York Review of Science Fiction 

“Thomas M. Disch isn’t afraid of backlash for what some might consider the writings of a heretic…extraordinarily funny….”

 :…amusing and subversive…. SF veteran [Thomas M.] Disch fires another salvo in the ongoing debate between atheists and believers.”

“Tom Disch is the Devil! He says he’s God, but he’s not. Read this book against my warning, and at your peril. Every page you turn will send you deeper into the abyss. Tom Disch is America’s own Mephistopheles!”
—Alice K. Turner, author of The History of Hell

“The god Disch is brilliant, startling, playful, vengeful, poetic, and kind of scary. As gods go, we could do worse. The writer Disch is brilliant, startling, playful, vengeful, poetic, and kind of scary. As writers go, there is no one better.”
—Karen Joy Fowler, author of The Jane Austin Book Club

“Of course, Tom has always been Jovial…but an actual divinity? Only now must I relinquish my birthright atheism, in recognition of the presence of a literary god. An obscure Vietnamese cult worshipped Victor Hugo, and I was tempted, but that was long ago, and they have passed from the scene.”
—Norman Rush, author of Mating and Mortals

“My faith was rewarded with a soul-satisfying reading experience.”
Denver Post

“I first came to believe in God when he successfully cured my cancer in 1969. A few years later he again answered my prayers by laying his hands on my first wife’s belly and ensuring that our child would be a son. On almost every occasion when I have prayed sincerely and selfishly to God in whatever country I have been in, he has answered me with his generous blessings, most recently when he cured my diabetes in what I call the Miracle of the I-35 Dairy Queen. I cannot worship nor give my heart to a more beneficent or loving God than He. I have thanked God on every occasion I have been presented with a major literary prize or when those I consider my literary rivals and enemies have been denied awards or been struck with deadly diseases.”
—Michael Moorcock, author of Stealer of Souls and Behold the Man

“A lovely, funny, interesting, incisive, and wonderfully blasphemous novel.”
—Jeff VanderMeer, author of City of Saints and Madmen and Shriek

“It has been the happy fate of myself, my twin brother Greg, and our two younger sibs, Gary and Nancy, to have grown up with a god for an older brother. Sometimes it has been difficult to get along with such a perfect know-it-all, but didn’t Jesus’s siblings have the same blessed problem? What can I say? We adore him.”
—Jeffrey James Disch

“I had never thought of Tom as stooping to God before, but it turns out to have been a good idea. It’s good to hear from a Voice up there that knows the score, knows how to share His laughter with those who are mostly victims of His terrible laugh, knows that He too is art of the Joke. So please stay on high. Do us all Worlds of good.”
—John Clute

“[Disch’s] audacious imagination, his fierce refusal to give in to conventional ideas, and his dark humor…are all on brilliant display in this satiric masterpiece.”
Asimov’s Science Fiction 

“This gorgeously wicked, heartbreakingly sweet satire settles old scores and initiates new ones, skewering its subjects with intelligence and wit. Disch’s generosity as a writer, as well as the keenness and breadth of his intellect, shine forth in these pages.”
Realms of Fantasy