Monday, September 30, 2013

In Case You Missed It...

ISBN-10: 087140379X ISBN-13: 9780871403797 Published: Liveright Publishing Corporation, 09/01/2013 Pages: 352 Language: English
Local author Allan Gurganus was on WUNC's The State of Things last Wednesday to discuss his new book, Local Souls. Naturally, I recommend giving the interview a listen, but I've also plucked out a few choice quotations from Mr. Gurganus for your perusal:

“I think it’s essential to love your characters, and that means loving them the way we love our loved ones, when they make terrible mistakes, when our kids get involved with drugs and the wrong crowd, when the man that we’ve loved for fifty years comes in and says ‘my secretary's attractive, you’re not, I’m out of here.’ Love doesn’t just stop and start, it continues. One of the great lessons, I think, in literature, is how many varieties of it there really are—how many varieties of erotic expression there really are. This is a book full of people who have sexual loves, including young, young kids and old, old people and that plays to what I think is central to understanding human beings. Walt Whitman says ‘We are unerringly lost without the sexual texture of things'…I’ve tried to apply that to my own characters."

“I really feel that the kind of heroics of waiting for your child in a car pick-up lane have never really been charted. We talk a lot about people climbing Everest (with a lot of sherpas carrying their luggage) but we’re not considering the lives of the natives and the responsible ones."

"I think there’s a kind of missingness that we all register. I mean we all feel that we were one of a pair of twins in utero and that we’re still looking for our other half."

"I think that all of us are locked in this dilemma: we think that duty is all that we have. We turn up for work and we don’t get any credit for being on time, we only get noticed for doing wrong, but there is a kind of dignity and a kind of power in staying home and taking care. And that’s been the fascination for me in writing this book."

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