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Library Card. I became absolutely consumed with the project of writing that PowerPoint. Q: It seems the idea of the pause is very much at work in your book—in the spaces between when people last met or between who they once were as one of your characters says pre-marriage, pre-parenthood, pre-money, pre-hard drug renunciation, pre-responsibility of any kind and who they are now.
What intrigues you about the pause? Unconsciously, I think this must be what intrigued me about the idea of pauses in songs when I first encountered it. But not yet. While much of the action takes place in New York City and San Francisco, you also take readers to Africa, to Italy, to a secret compound inhabited by a third world dictator. How important is setting in your fiction?
In almost every case, I began with a place, or even an atmosphere that precedes place, and out of that came people, and events, and eventually a story. Q: Bennie gets a surprise visit from one of his former band mates Scotty Hausmann, once the young star but now a down and out part-time custodial worker for the city.
I want to know what happened between A and B. First, I conceived of this book not as a novel or a story collection, but as an LP: a narrative that unfolds in segments that contrast a great deal with one another, but contain a range of styles and tell a story over time.
Like any LP, it has an A side and a B side, organized on the same principles of evolution and contrast. In our era of atomized song-buying, the LP is not just a physical relic, but a conceptual one—which is partly why I wanted to honor and exploit it as a structural model in this book. Are you nervous about the future of language?
But what I often end up feeling, even as I experience vertigo at the thought of the future—is that human beings are immensely resourceful, and capable of great beauty and genius, and that language and inner life will survive and even thrive because of those qualities, whatever threats they may face. Is that so? Can you talk about this connection between music and language? The point of connection between music and language is that both are deep and basic forms of human expression.
At the moment, they both feel imperiled, from a business standpoint will there still be publishing or a music industry in the future? Culturally and humanistically, these are vast, gaping questions. Read An Excerpt. Add to Cart. Without these cookies, we can't provide services to you. These cookies allow us to monitor OverDrive's performance and reliability.