Nalo Hopkins, Author and Textile Designer

Excerpt from the New Yorker’s Page-Turner:

I don’t think it’s a case of my writing inspiring my fabric designs; it’s that both my writing and my designs are fuelled by the same passions and obsessions of mine. I work a lot from historical illustrations and photos. Sometimes I change the original images significantly, sometimes not.

Read/see the full here.

Andrew Ervin responds to the VIDA Count 2012

Excerpt from The Rumpus:

What I’ve come to realize, thanks to VIDA and the Count, is that my feminist convictions do not make up for the low number of books by women I’ve reviewed. Not yet. Good intentions are not enough. It’s people like me, people aware of the persistent sexism of our society, who need to do a better job of promoting books by women. To ignore the gender disparity in publishing is to perpetuate it. I can’t do that any longer. Instead, I will continue to champion all of the books I love in every way I can—only now I will do so with a clearer understanding of just how far we still have to go in building the literary community that we all deserve.

Read the full response here.
Read the VIDA Count 2012.

Eleanor Stanford: the Clarity of Memory

Excerpt from Superstition Review:

I needed clarity, and the only way I knew to seek clarity was to write.

***

Maybe it wasn’t clarity that I needed, though. Maybe it was simply to tell my story, dust-obscured, deep-throated wail that it was. What I’d wanted all along was to put the island where I’d lived for two years on a common map.

For the full, read here.

William Maxwell: The Landscape of Writing

Interview excerpt from the Paris Review:

Autobiography is simply the facts, but imagination is the landscape in which the facts take place, and the way that everything moves.

***

I just hang over the typewriter waiting to see what is going to happen. It begins with the very first sentence. I don’t will the sentence to come; I wait, as actively passive as I can possibly be. For some reason the phrase “Once upon a time” seems to be essential. Then, if I am sufficiently trusting, the rest of the story follows, and the last sentence is straight from the first.

For the full, read here.

Josh Magill on Learning to Be a Writer

Excerpt from Beyond the Margins:

My professor was trying to teach me that all writing was hard work—complete with difficult thinking and research—and was not something to take for granted.

***

I must understand that success often comes slowly as well, not instantly or without hard work and some rejection. Did I truly know how to write a story? Did I understand that opening up to my writing fears was the only way to access the good stuff inside?

Read the full here.

Haruki Murakami on Clarity in the Story

Interview excerpt from The Paris Review:

I get some images and I connect one piece to another. That’s the story line. Then I explain the story line to the reader. You should be very kind when you explain something. If you think, It’s okay; I know that, it’s a very arrogant thing. Easy words and good metaphors; good allegory. So that’s what I do. I explain very carefully and clearly.

Read the full here.

Jess Walter on Planning a Novel

Interview excerpt from The Daily Beast:

I don’t really separate the writing from the planning, as I’m doing it. Sentences lead to other sentences, characters grow, events happen. My only trick is to switch to some other project when one gets stuck. And they always get stuck. Without sounding overly sentimental about the process, I’d say trying to describe how you tend to conceive of a book is like describing how you tend to fall in love.

Read the full here.