March 17, 2012

Paul Auster: The one thing I try to do in all my books is to leave enough room in the prose for the reader to inhabit it. Because I finally believe that it’s the reader who writes the book and not the writer. In my own case as a reader (and I’ve certainly read more books than I’ve written!), I find that I almost invariably appropriate scenes and situations from a book and graft them onto my own experiences—or vice versa. In reading a book like Pride and Prejudice, for example, I realized at a certain point that all the events were set in the house I grew up in as a child. No matter how specific a writer’s description of a place might be, I always seem to twist it into something I’m familiar with. I’ve asked a number of my friends if this happens to them when they read fiction as well. For some yes, for others no. I think this probably has a lot to do with one’s relation to language, how one responds to words printed on a page. Whether the words are just symbols, or whether they are passageways into our unconscious.
—BOMB 23, 1988

Paul Auster: The one thing I try to do in all my books is to leave enough room in the prose for the reader to inhabit it. Because I finally believe that it’s the reader who writes the book and not the writer. In my own case as a reader (and I’ve certainly read more books than I’ve written!), I find that I almost invariably appropriate scenes and situations from a book and graft them onto my own experiences—or vice versa. In reading a book like Pride and Prejudice, for example, I realized at a certain point that all the events were set in the house I grew up in as a child. No matter how specific a writer’s description of a place might be, I always seem to twist it into something I’m familiar with. I’ve asked a number of my friends if this happens to them when they read fiction as well. For some yes, for others no. I think this probably has a lot to do with one’s relation to language, how one responds to words printed on a page. Whether the words are just symbols, or whether they are passageways into our unconscious.

BOMB 23, 1988

(Source: bombmagazine, via newdirectionspublishing)

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