Yesterday marked the debut of an off-Broadway staging of The Sound and the Fury (April Seventh, 1928 ), based on the first section of William Faulkner‘s novel. The New York Theater Workshop has a handy primer on the novel and its adaptation, complete with a Compson family tree. NYTW’s Web site also has an interview with the play’s director, John Collins. Excerpt: “[W]hen we read The Sound and the Fury out loud it seemed transformed. Looking at it on the page, with its typeface changes and broken sentences, you feel like you’re being challenged to solve some crazy puzzle. Hearing the words aloud brought the humor forward much more and allowed the movement of the narrative to make a kind of musical sense.”
Oscar Hijuelos cautions Junot Diaz not to let that Pulitzer go to his head. Hijuelos, currently teaching at Duke, has a new novel out in the fall, Dark Dude.
In the Jerusalem Post, John Freeman visits the Brooklyn home of literary couple Paul Auster and Siri Hustvedt, who has a new novel, The Sorrows of an American. Cohabitation isn’t always a boon for writers, we learn:
Watching Auster and Hustvedt interact intellectually, one can appreciate why artists and writers keep appearing in her work. You can also see why they don’t work in the same house. (Five years ago, I interviewed Hustvedt and stopped, when I thought I heard someone beating on a set of drums in the house: “That’s Paul typing,” Hustvedt explained with a wry smile.)
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I just saw Diaz yesterday at Politics and Prose. It didn’t seem like he’d let the Pulitzer go to his head. He freely admitted that he still drives a used car and that publishers don’t lavish the same attention on literary fiction that they do on the “stuff that sells.” He also made reference to the fact that it took him many years to finish his first novel.
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