Are you interested in the thoughts and lives of the bookish people of today? Don’t look any further and read the best interviews of the week.
Sloane Crosley’s The Clasp is out and she’ll teach you how to force yourself to write a novel.
I went the route of public fear. And the Times interviewed me when I quit my job, and they asked me, “What should the bio be?” And I was like, “Say I quit my job, and I’m the author of these two things, and that I’m currently at work on a novel.” Because I’m like, if it’s in the New York Times, I sort of have to do it.
Joshua Cohen is writing a serial novel in real-time online. The Believer asked him some questions while he was exhausted from working on it all day.
Obviously I have some anxiety about this. I was born before the internet, born into a culture of the book, into a family that valued books. I was taking books as the model of all thought—in the sense of worrying, fussing over fixities. Having a perfectionism. Having a notion that it’s never right, never at its depth.
Jessica Crispin, founder and editor of Bookslut, wrote The Dead Ladies Project, a book about travelling through Europe in search of the creative impulses of dead writers.
Partly, if only for my own pleasure, I wanted to take apart the lazy idea we have about the Great Male Genius. These men who supposedly strive on their own and live by their wits and their enormous egos, defying haters and naysayers, and overcoming impossible odds. That’s what we tell ourselves about people like Hemingway and Picasso, as if they lived outside of time, weren’t influenced by anyone, and possessed a kind of purity that had to find its expression. All of that bullshit.
Adrian Tomine shares his writing process with Catapult.
Some of my stories start with an image, some start with a character, and some start with a complete plot. This one started with the idea of someone sneaking back into an apartment that he no longer lived in.
Lincoln Michel created a playlist for his novel Upright Beasts.
I know at least a few people who believe that every writer is a failed musician. I was never very talented musically, but I did have try and fail to start a series of musical projects that were mostly conceptual jokes. One was a brutal metal band that would be called Greek Fire and would involve us playing in blood-soaked togas as I screamed “Release the Kraken!”
Marilynne Robinson is our 25th book club pick, will appear at Crossing Border and John Adams AND got interviewed by Obama. Such a busy lady.
There was great tolerance in the house for quirkiness. No, it’s a funny thing because on the one hand, I’m absolutely indebted to my origins, whatever they are, whatever that means. On the other hand, with all love and respect, my parents were not particularly bookish people.