‘Enlightened thoughtlessness’ – Interview met Chad Harbach in Vooys
In de nieuwe Vooys doen redacteuren Else Boer en Susan Potgieter verslag van hun interview met de Amerikaanse auteur Chad Harbach. Zij bevragen hem over het schrijverschap en het succes van zijn roman The Art of Fielding, die in 2011 zowel door critici als door het grote publiek goed werd ontvangen.
‘From rags to riches’, it happened to American author Chad Harbach. Unemployed, with only a manuscript he had been working on for the last ten years, he suddenly became the next big literary promise of 2011. His novel The Art of Fielding, about a baseball shortstop who all of a sudden is unable to throw the ball, was celebrated by both critics and the general public. These were not Harbach’s first steps into the literary circuit, however. We contact Harbach by an unsteady Skype connection. He is obviously busy, but after a couple of minutes the friendly American is able to chat with us about n+1, his slow writing process, Herman Melville and other matters related to his successful novel.
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A ‘slow, very slow’ writing process
Harbach started writing the novel The Art of Fielding in 2000. In 2011, it was finally finished and published shortly afterwards. Harbach fills us in on what happened in the meantime: ‘By 2004 we founded n+1. The next six years the magazine took more of my time than probably anything, more than my actual job that paid my bills and more than the novel. And of course we didn’t get paid for it. Very often the novel was the third thing I was able to get to. So the writing process of The Art of Fielding, well, it was slow, very slow. Another reason it took me a long time was that I certainly wrote thousands upon thousands upon thousands of pages, but most of them got thrown away. During the early years of working on the book I probably wrote a hundred words for every one that exists in the book now.
Lees het hele interview online op de website van Vooys.