What a boon I found the day I stumbled upon the archives of The Paris Review’s writer interviews.
I had been reading Hemingway’s Wikipedia article when I found a link to his Paris Review interview published in 1958. Interviewed by George Plimpton, and listed as The Art of Fiction, No. 21, I was instantly intrigued and wondered about interviews number 1 through 20 and how many came after.
What I found was a treasure trove of gems from more than two hundred novelists of the last sixty years, interviewed by other excellent writers.
If there is one web site you can bookmark for the best advice, encouragement, provocation, and views into the writer’s life and craft, this is it:
I find myself revisiting the grand masters interviewed in the 1950’s most often: Hemingway, Faulkner, Simenon, Mauriac, and Forster. But I always come away with some kind of inspiration no matter whom I read.
The interview series also includes poets, dramatists, journalists, essayists, publishers, and humorists, and a few writers of genre fiction. Stephen King, Woody Allen, Garrison Keillor, and Billy Wilder are unexpected-but-fascinating contributors with good insights into the life of the professional writer.
Since first finding this list, I have often returned to it and have found new favorites I had never heard of before, but probably should have. Henry Green, Jim Crace, Beryl Bainbridge, and Paula Fox are a few.
As you look through the list (you can look by name or by decade) which of your favorites do you find? After reading their interviews, what have you learned about them or yourself? And have you found any new favorites?
Rick Mallery is a self-published novelist. He uses this blog to interact with and encourage other self-publishing writers who continue their life’s work outside the spotlight of the publishing industry. His latest book is Dreams of the Moon Bear. You can learn more about him and his work at his web site: www.rickmallery.com.