What do you create?
I’m a novelist and freelance journalist and a mother. So, I create books and stories and, I guess you could say that that one glorious time, I created a whole human being. And he’s an utter delight.
Why do you create?
I create because storytelling has always intrigued me. It’s at the core of being a human being. It’s what makes us, us. I write to try to understand this world and our place in it. I write to gain perspective, to learn about things far beyond me, and—I hope—to entertain. I want to give readers a glimpse into someone else’s experience and dig into real-world emotions to maybe help us navigate through the lumps and knots in life a little better.
THE THUNDER BENEATH US gets into some heavy things: shame, guilt, identity, secrets, complicated family dynamics, love, and grief. There’s a lot of emotion in each of these issues on their own. I write to maybe sort through all of it.
What do you consume?
I consume a lot of words and images. Overall, I like consuming stories. That means plenty of books, magazine and online pieces, long reads, quick clever deep captions, and also really good, smart TV shows. I’ve never been into snubbing my nose at television. I’ve always owned one—except for that brief period when I moved into my first apartment in Brooklyn—and I can always find something inspired, fascinating and plain ol’ fun to watch. For example, I’ve been really enjoying Atlanta on FX and re-reading Their Eyes Were Watching God. This re-read stemmed partly from the fact that I haven’t read the classic since university and also I’ve set down a book-buying embargo. No new books until I’ve made a real dent in what I call Mount Nightstand.