Interviews

Interviews with interesting people. Subscribe: RSS

Mary Roach

Mary Roach

“Researchers who work with cadavers aren’t often eager to talk to writers. They prefer to stay out of the spotlight, and I don’t blame them. That was by far the hardest part of doing this book.”

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Joseph O’Connor

Joseph O'Connor

“That’s another thing I like about 19th century fiction —it tended to try and answer all the questions. Which is the other absolute fear in contemporary fiction. It’s a wonderful thing to have said about you in a review now, ‘The book raises more questions than it answers.'”

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Barry Gifford

Barry Gifford

“I always identified more with the visual artists than with writers. In fact, I am not friends with very many writers.”

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Jane Smiley

Jane Smiley

“Some people would say that if you can’t detach yourself from the world we see around us, then it would pretty much, pretty soon bury you under.”

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Michael Lewis on Moneyball

Michael Lewis

“It’s knuckle-headed stuff. The sports world is an echo chamber. All it takes is one quote from a general manager and a thousand sports columns bloom.”

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Kimberley Snow

Kimberley Snow

“Writing, like meditation, can be a path for developing compassion as well as bringing things up into consciousness. Something about picking up the pen, or letting my fingers just sort of dance over the keyboard, helps to by-pass the normal busy mind and take me somewhere else.”

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Iris Chang

Iris Chang

“Racism is always there underneath, but usually it is exploited in these times of economic crisis, and it’s hard to find out when one slides into another. But it usually does whenever the economic crisis reaches its peak.”

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Carolyn Parkhurst

Carolyn Parkhurst

“I don’t usually have much of the plot figured out when I begin. I start with the characters, and with a basic premise, and then I just start writing and see where it goes.”

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Jonathan Safran Foer

Jonathan Safran Foer

“…with writing I realized not so much that I was born to be a writer but that writing was much more flexible activity than I had previously thought. That its constraints were my constraints. It was limited by my limitations. And that was exciting.”

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Sarah Vowell on Her Cherokee Heritage

“I don’t particularly think of myself as Cherokee. I really think of myself as an American. And as such I’m incredibly reverent about the founding ideals of freedom and equality.”

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Elise Blackwell

Elise Blackwell

“One of the ideas I explore in Hunger, though, is that we don’t know who will turn out to be brave under extreme pressure. Timid and annoying people can act with grace, strength, and bravery, while people noted for their courage can prove themselves cowards.”

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Amanda Hesser

Amanda Hesser

“In the past decade, a lot of lifestyle subjects from home design to food have been put up on this pedestal, and there is a lot of social pressure that goes along with that now.”

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Robert Stone

Robert Stone

“And sometimes the epigraph becomes too heavy for the story and sometimes it seems too overwhelmingly portentous for the story. If it approaches sidewise, it’s more effective.”

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Matthew Derby

Matthew Derby

“my work would never have been published anywhere ten years ago (although maybe that would have been a good thing), but it found a readership in a group of similarly disgruntled, displaced readers who wanted something else.”

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Percival Everett

Percival Everett

“People who like my work like my work for all the reasons that I would want them to like it. And the people who don’t like it, dislike it for all the reasons I would want them to dislike it.”

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