In which men discuss John Updike, the elusive perfect novel, and “the really big questions.” Check out this great conversation between Interview magazine’s Michael Hafford and How to Read a Novelist author John Freeman. It’s short, but it gets a lot of bang for its buck.
“I’m probably going way out of my league here,” John says, “but even with dissonant music, if you can push through the pain into some deep neural harmony of: ‘This is what life is!’ Harmony of meaning and the sound of language is where the perfection occurs. A lot of novels wax in and out of that thing. Doing the work, moving the story along, you feel the intensity wane and you have a time to doze. The ones where you’re glued to it the whole time because it’s that intense—those are the masterpieces.”
And if you’re around New York tonight, John will be sharing more deep thoughts (not too deep—just the right amount of deep) with Geoff Dyer at PowerHouse Arena at 7pm—we’d love to see you there!