“I start with a block of words that I carve and carve and carve until I find the simplest and most powerful way to move the narrative along.”
“What I wrote was deeply triggering for me, but I couldn’t arrive at the place I am now if I didn’t see on the page what happened to me.”
After a dozen books, what’s still left to know about this best-selling humorist’s life?
In a word: Plenty.
“I want to write a little bit more like a monster. It requires some practice in finding the right beasts to deploy. It takes a village of Godzillas.”
“What I am at my core is a journalist and a reporter, and I’ve always been drawn to stories that require a lot of reporting and research.”
“It took me a long time, and many false starts, to find my way to a project where I felt that same synthesis of subject and psychological state again.”
“You’re climbing Everest by looking down at your feet, not looking up at the mountain. The second I look up, I wouldn’t be able to breathe, and it would all be too daunting.”
“[Writing] takes a long time. There is no rushing it and the work exists on its own timetable, outside of your own personal deadlines.”
“Honoring the separation between the private activity of writing and the public activity of being a writer has helped me structure my days.”
“I really wanted to plunge into the all-consuming world of the novel. I wanted to try it because it really scared me.”