Monday, December 31, 2007
Wondrous and Fantastical Lives, known as burdens to some
Junot Díaz, thank you for giving voice to your life and to your project. A project I think we all are engaged with in many ways at TNS.
Luís directed me to this amazing interview with Díaz conducted by a Cornell professor. Visiting his Alma Mater in February 2007, Díaz had been receiving consistent acclaim for his book of short stories, Drown, and anticipation for his now released work, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao.
I was wary of the interviewer from the beginning after hearing his tone and initial questions.
Díaz had so much to tell that the questions were diverted and spun into a larger story.
Then, the interviewer presented the box.
Asking about his politics (of being different) and wondering aloud if he carries a burden (of a non-white story), the interviewer falls into every trap of how one treats a "race" author. Instead of growing frustrated, Díaz responds beautifully about the true burden of the "willfully unseeing." It'd be a mistake to summarize what you need to hear for yourself. If I have time after the Holidays, I will try and transcribe the interview. For me, it's exactly what I needed to energize and jettison my creative dreaming into the new year. Off to the bookstore I go. Have a safe and fun New Year's, everyone.
An Interview You Won't Soon Forget