James Greer

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For the United States Navy admiral, see James A. Greer. For the American politician and businessman, see Jim Greer.
James Greer
James greer.jpg
Residence Los Angeles, CA
Occupation Novelist, screenwriter, musician, critic
Years active 1991-present
Website jamesgreer.net

James Greer is an American novelist, screenwriter, musician, and critic. He lives in Los Angeles[1][2] but spends much of his time in France.[3]

Career as a musician/critic[edit]

Greer was Senior Editor and Senior Writer at Spin[4][5][6][7] magazine in NYC in the early 90s.[8] He then moved to Dayton, Ohio, where in 1994 he joined the influential Indie rock band Guided By Voices, contributing bass guitar and vocals to the albums Alien Lanes (Matador, 1995) and Under the Bushes Under the Stars (Matador, 1996) and touring extensively across the U.S. and in Europe.[9][10] Greer wrote and recorded the song "Trendspotter Acrobat" for the Guided By Voices EP Sunfish Holy Breakfast, released by Matador Records on November 19, 1996.[11]

He was engaged to Kim Deal of the Pixies/Breeders[12][13] from 1991 until their break-up in 1996.

Greer started a new band in March 2012 with Guylaine Vivarat called Détective after the Jean-Luc Godard film of that name.[14] Greer's former band Guided By Voices recently announced several tour dates in September 2012 for which Détective would be the opening band.[15]

Career as a novelist/author[edit]

Greer has published two novels, Artificial Light (Little House on the Bowery/Akashic, 2006)[16][17][18] and The Failure (Akashic, 2010).[19][20][21] Artificial Light won a California Book Award Silver Medal for First Fiction.[22] Noted American novelist Dennis Cooper has written about Greer's latest novel that "James Greer, one of the nimblest and most multilayered American fiction writers, has, with his latest novel The Failure, pulled off a sublime and shivery-smooth literary hat-trick-cum-emotional-gotcha. I defy anyone to come up with an equation to explain how this book's first impression as a ridiculously clever, funny crime story can gradually disclose a metanovel built from far more encyclopedic scratch only to reveal upon its conclusion a central, overriding thought so heartfelt literally it trembles your lower lip. This is one stunning piece of work."[23] Greer also wrote a biography of Guided By Voices, Guided By Voices: A Brief History (Black Cat/Grove Press, 2005).[24][25]

Career as a screenwriter[edit]

Greer has written or co-written several movies, including Max Keeble's Big Move[26][27] (Disney, 2001), Just My Luck[28][29] (20th Century Fox, 2006) starring Lindsay Lohan, the Jackie Chan vehicle The Spy Next Door[30][31] (Lion's Gate, 2010) and the forthcoming Cleo[32][33][34][35][36] (2012), a rock musical directed by Steven Soderbergh starring Catherine Zeta-Jones.

In March 2013, Steven Soderbergh announced he was working on a 12-hour version of John Barth's The Sot-Weed Factor. The book was adapted for Soderbergh by Greer.[37]


  1. ^ "Interview in LitnImage Magazine giving an overview of Greer's career". Litnimage.com. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  2. ^ Adrienne Crew (August 8, 2006). "Interview in LAist discussing Greer's life in LA". Laist.com. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  3. ^ "Interview in NY Press mentioning that Greer wrote his latest novel in France". Nypress.com. November 30, 1999. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  4. ^ "Article in Stereogum discussing a 1992 issue of ''Spin'' and Greer's contributions". Stereogum.com. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  5. ^ Alvarez, Alex (March 8, 2010). "Article in FishBowl New York discussing Greer's participation in Spin's 25th Anniversary Issue". Mediabistro.com. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  6. ^ "''Spin'' article discussing "former Spin editor" Greer's participation in Steven Soderbergh's ''Cleo''". Spin.com. April 29, 2010. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  7. ^ Adrienne Crew (August 8, 2006). "Interview in LAist discussing Greer's "influence on a generation of music journalists"". Laist.com. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  8. ^ "Article in Cincinnati's ''CityBeat'' discussing Greer's career at ''Spin'', tenure in GBV, projects with Soderbergh, etc". Citybeat.com. April 28, 2010. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  9. ^ Thomas, Stephen. "Guided By Voices biography in AllMusic". Allmusic.com. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  10. ^ "Official Guided By Voices site". Gbv.com. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  11. ^ "Detailed song information at GBVDB – Guided By Voices Database". Gbvdb.com. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  12. ^ "Article in the Boston Phoenix clarifying Greer's relationship with Kim Deal". Thephoenix.com. January 23, 2007. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  13. ^ Patrick, Michael (April 22, 2010). "Article in the Long Island Press discussing Greer's career at Spin, relationship to Kim Deal, and tenure in Guided By Voices". Longislandpress.com. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  14. ^ "MP3 at 3PM article in Magnet Magazine discussing Greer's new project". Magnetmagazine.com. May 17, 2012. Retrieved May 27, 2012. 
  15. ^ Robinson, Joe (May 21, 2012). "Guided by Voices Announce New Album, 2012 Tour". Diffuser.fm. Retrieved May 27, 2012. 
  16. ^ Jaime-Becerra, Michael (October 8, 2006). "Los Angeles Times review of Artificial Light". Articles.latimes.com. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  17. ^ Sheila Scoville. "Ink 19 review of ''Artificial Light''". Ink19.com. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  18. ^ Willamette Week review of Artificial Light[dead link]
  19. ^ Zach Baron (March 24, 2010). "Review of ''The Failure'' in the Village Voice". Villagevoice.com. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  20. ^ "KQED review of ''The Failure''". Kqed.org. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  21. ^ "Publisher's Weekly Review of ''The Failure''". Publishersweekly.com. November 9, 2009. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  22. ^ Official California Book Awards Site[dead link]
  23. ^ "Indie | Literary | Books". Akashicbooks.com. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  24. ^ david (January 31, 2005). "Large Hearted Boy review of GBV biography". Largeheartedboy.com. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  25. ^ "Review of Greer's GBV biography in Bookforum". Bookforum.com. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  26. ^ "Roger Ebert's review in the Chicago Sun-Times of ''Max Keeble's Big Move''". Rogerebert.suntimes.com. October 5, 2001. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  27. ^ Max Keeble's Big Move IMDB page
  28. ^ Chang, Justin (May 11, 2006). "Variety review of ''Just My Luck''". Variety. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  29. ^ Just My Luck IMDB page
  30. ^ "Roger Ebert's review in the Chicago Sun-Times of ''The Spy Next Door''". Rogerebert.suntimes.com. January 13, 2010. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  31. ^ The Spy Next Door IMDB page
  32. ^ Olsen, Mark (January 29, 2006). "New York Times article discussing Greer's involvement in Soderbergh's Cleo". The New York Times. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  33. ^ Thompson, Paul (December 3, 2008). "Pitchfork news item discussing Cleo and Greer's involvement". Pitchfork.com. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  34. ^ "MTV article discussing Cleo and Greer". Moviesblog.mtv.com. October 24, 2008. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  35. ^ Keslassy, Elsa (October 23, 2008). "Variety article discussing Cleo and Greer's involvement". Variety. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  36. ^ Thomson, Katherine (January 2, 2009). "Huffington Post article discussing Cleo". Huffington Post. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  37. ^ Kellogg, Carolyn (April 2, 2013). "Steven Soderbergh's 12-hour John Barth adaptation, via James Greer". Los Angeles Times. 

External links[edit]

  • North of Onhava – James Greer's Official Site: [1]
  • James Greer at the Internet Movie Database
  • GBVDB – Guided By Voices Data Base [2]
  • Guided By Voices Official Website [3]
  • Grove/Atlantic page for Greer's Guided By Voices: A Brief History [4]
  • Akashic Books page for Greer's novel Artificial Light [5]
  • Akashic Books page for Greer's novel The Failure [6]
  • Cleo at the Internet Movie Database [7]
  • Cleo at AllMovie [8]