I said last year I’d take a break from reading so much. I should have known that wouldn’t happen. I will say, however, that I read far less “serious” books and many more fun re-reads for the soul. I also allowed myself to put down books I wasn’t feeling (except in one notable case) and shove them…
You join good company with that 1Q84 pick! Last year, Charles Baxter said, “It’s the kind of risky ambitious storytelling that writers of my generation are often too scared to try.”
All month we’ll be tracking and sharing your #yir12 pieces, everybody. Keep ‘em coming!
How do you calculate a writer’s odds?
At the very start, when we put our list together, we have people for the shortlist and we have an in-house expert who uses lots of things on the internet — forums and social media — and who is quite a big literature fanatic himself, and he puts the list together. Then he puts the odds together based firstly on who he thinks has a chance and secondly on who represents the current thinking of the panel and wider world. And obviously, as soon as people start betting, that’s also when things will change.
Whether you take the doughnut hole as a blank space or as an entity unto itself is a purely metaphysical question and does not affect the taste of the doughnut one bit.
John Wesley Harding: Your books deal with situations a lot like those in “Blue Velvet.” The average guy finding extraordinary things in a very normal place.
Haruki Murakami: We are crazy about “Twin Peaks” in Japan. Do you remember the room with red curtains and the dancing dwarf? That’s the room I mean when I think about subconsciousness. There is something strange and special in yourself. David Lynch knows that too and so we can both create those images, the same images.
JWH: Your books are heavily symbolic, by mistake almost.
HM: I don’t like to analyze my subconscious. It is an asset I don’t want any explanations. You may find this very strange, but I don’t dream much. At least, I cannot remember my dreams. But I can create them.
If David Lynch and Haruki Murakami went out to lunch together, they would definitely order Spaghetti and likely have cherry pie for desert, with a damn fine cup of coffee.