I Don’t Believe: The Next Big Thing

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27/12/2012 by funnomad

Ten Interview Questions for the Next Big Thing:

What is your working title of your book?


Where did the idea come from for the book?

The book-in-progress is a collection of prose sketches/stories written in the second person that foreground the hypothetical leap involved in all acts of reading, but that fiction entirely depends upon. In some ways, you could say that it is a book about the suspension of disbelief – about how much a reader can suspend while disbelieving.

What genre does your book fall under?

Oh, for filing purposes, probably postmodern antirealist experimental avant-garde nonfiction. But if you want to be more specific, it would be “literary fiction”. I can hear the imaginary grad students in my head chiming up to chirp about how perfectly meta it is, but the truth lies somewhere between metempsychosis and metastasis.

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

You would, of course! If this book was adapted into anything it would be a jibjab style animated adventure with your head bouncing awkwardly on an ambiguous body trolling through Kafkaesque misadventures with Ubu Roi as sidekick.

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

A book about you disappearing while reading.

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

This question is geared for a different kind of author – there is a great and joyful middle ground between the two poles of vanity publishing in this country! If this project ever does get published, it will almost certainly be with an independent literary small press. It is the kind of writing that an agent would not fathom touching, and for good mutual reason.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

I have been working on the manuscript for two years now, but the first work that has been incorporated into the manuscript was written over ten years ago. Is that plagiarism?

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

I was very inspired by Calvino’s Cosmic Comedies, all of Borges, and a beautiful, if obscure, bpNichol short story essay written in the second person.

Who or what inspired you to write this book?

Cervantes made me do it.

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

I just realized that this interview was intended to focus on manuscripts that are finished, accepted, and about to be published as a promotional tool, rather than exploring work in progress and where my creative energies are flowing at the moment. My next book coming out is BOYCOTT, a collective collage of global boycott movements likely out in the early New Year. I have another manuscript called Exquisite Corp., collaboratively written by 225 people (the most ever for a poetry book), finished and in the queue with a small press. These books were finished quite a while ago and have already assumed that level of fascinated horrified abstraction all excretion quickly assumes: oh, is that from me? But both of those books were, ultimately, written by other people. Ifs was not.

This NBT interview was brought to me by Stephen Cain.

I, in turn, send it off to Kateri Lanthier, Nathaniel G. Moore, and Brad Cran.


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