03-29-12:Terry Bisson in Conversation with Karen Joy Fowler
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'Any Day Now' at Capitola Book Café
I had a front row seat — and a tapeless recorder with two forgiving microphones — when Terry Bisson and Karen Joy Fowler sat down to talk about his book 'Any Day Now,' at the Capitola Book Café.
Bisson and Fowler are old friends through SF in SF and who knows what other alternate universes. Their conversation at Capitola Book Café was a great combination of literary dissections and two friends hanging out and chatting about books.
Terry gave a great reading, a sort of movie trailer version of his book that captured the essence of the reading experience in a listening experience, which is much harder than one might presume. Kren Joy Fowler followed up with the sort of questions that you'd expect from the author of 'Sarah Canary' — questions that took the form of the man to whom they were asked. It was an evening of insight
03-28-12 UPDATE:Podcast Update: Time to Read, Episode 37: Matt Ruff, 'The Mirage' and Alex Gilvarry, 'From the Memoirs of a Non-enemy Combatant'
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Here's the thirty-seventh episode of my new series of podcasts, which I'm calling Time to Read. The podcasts/radio broadcasts will be of books worth your valuable reading time. I'll try to keep the reports under four minutes, for a radio-friendly format. If you want to run them on your show or podcast, let me know.
My hope is that in under four minutes I can offer readers a concise review and an opportunity to hear the author read from or speak about the work. I'm hoping to offer a new one every week.
"...one somewhat tortured soul to be the center of the novel..."
— Matt Ruff
Matt Ruff is anything but a tortured soul himself, and that makes the creation of a novel like 'The Mirage' all the more remarkable. He's easygoing but clearly very meticulous, very particular about his writing. He's got a lot to say about his new novel, and what is refreshing is that he can say it and still have the entire novel left for the reader as a fresh new experience.
Generally, I don't arrive at an interview with specific questions in mind, but my producer at KUSP had asked me, essentially, just what the heck did Matt think he was doing? Ruff of course knew exactly what he was doing and why. But he head a lot of new stuff to tell me about the novel, in ways I thought really opened up the book for me.
The origins of the book are not based in the politics. In fact to the degree it can be, this is not a very political novel. Even though this book sports a great plot, and a fully-fleshed alternate reality, this is really a book about perceptions, and that includes the reader's perceptions. Plus, it's fun.