Victor LaValle photographed by Teddy Wolff.
Victor LaValle is a genre genius: The Changeling (June 13) satisfies as a horror story, a fairy tale, and a contemporary New York narrative all in one.
“I’ve been working with the same editor now for about four books,” LaValle says of Chris Jackson, publisher and editor-in-chief of Random House imprint One World, “so when I give him 100 pages of the next book, he knows it’s going to be such a variety of ingredients that it’s going to ...
Lisa Bunker photographed by Dawn Huebner.
Some of the best advice Lisa Bunker received for writing a book had nothing to do with writing a book.
“The best advice I ever got for naming a child was ‘use all the names you love,’ ” says Bunker, author of Felix Yz. “By the time the next kid comes along, you’ll love different names—don’t hold one for later.
“So that’s what I did with this book,” she says of her debut novel. “I put in everything ...
The Colonel wrote a romance novel.
“The Colonel didn’t satisfy me.” —Amazon reviewer Jennifer Hendriks, on Tender Wings of Desire, the 96-page romance novel “written by” Colonel Harland Sanders. The novel, set in Victorian England and featuring a hunky version of the colonel on the cover, coincides with promotional meals for Mother’s Day, one of KFC’s most profitable days in the calendar year, TIME magazine reports. Despite its failure to put Hendriks in a finger-licking mood, Tender Wings of Desire has an overall rating of ...
For Canadian author Cary Fagan, there’s no format as freeing as a picture book.
“When you write a picture book, you can theoretically do anything,” says Fagan, author of A Cage Went in Search of a Bird. “You can write about a cage. You can write a book that has no humans in it. It can be very funny, terribly sad, profound, poetic, or crude. The scope is so wide and, to me, that’s a very exciting thing.” ...
Courtesy Jason Thrasher
John T. Edge’s The Potlikker Papers: A Food History of the Modern South is no mere paean to peanuts, homage to hominy, and laudation to lard. Like the nutritive broth for which it’s named, this title is more substantive than it appears at a glance.
“One the primary aims of my book,” says Edge, a native Georgian who lives in Oxford, Mississippi, “is to take this seemingly soft-focused, romantic subject—simplistic subject—of food and bring to life the characters and ...
Quips on our radar.
Robert Pirsig, the author of Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance
“To get a line that is exactly right, you sometimes have to sacrifice everything,” he told The Washington Post in 1991. “That goes for being a celebrity, for interaction with people, personal comfort, everything.” —Robert Pirsig, author of Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, remembered by the Los Angeles Times. Pirsig died April 24, at age 88, at home in South Berwick, Maine.
“I think being outside of an industry hub means that most people attend ...
To get the girl in Randa Abdel-Fattah’s YA novel, The Lines We Cross, Australian teenager Michael Blainey needs to get (and stay) “woke”—though it’s probably not the term he would use.
“I’m familiar with it,” Abdel-Fattah says of the slang usage denoting possession of a social justice consciousness, “but it’s very much an American-specific context word, although it certainly resonates with what’s happening in Michael’s situation.”
Readers of The Lines We Cross (ages 12-17) meet Michael at an ...
Quips on our radar
Lidia Yuknavitch photographed by Andrew Kovalev.
“He doesn’t know anything about marriage, so I’m not concerned.”
—Nan Talese on husband Gay Talese’s forthcoming book on the subject of their 57-year marriage, in the Vanity Fair profile “How Nan Talese Blazed Her Pioneering Path Through the Publishing Boys’ Club”
What are some words you despise that have been used to describe your writing by readers and/or reviewers?
“When a reviewer claimed The Small Backs of Children, a story about a girl who ...