LF: Your novels have a signature, renegade style: you incorporate lists and taxonomies; employ upper case, bold, and italicized words here and there, seemingly without rhythm or reason; insert snippets from songs and advertisements; and line up loosely affiliated words in sequences of mischievous wordplay. How do these practices afford your work more flexibility?
LE: “Without rhythm or reason?” I object! There is always a reason. AND rhythm! It’s not about flexibility. I say things the way they need to be said.
Fiction is like a rock that sits there in your way. How do you break a rock? You give it everything you’ve got. It’s up to each new writer to clear the path. A writer exists to question form. Otherwise nothing new would ever be written.
Art is play. The form emerges as you go along, through play. I decided this novel should all be one sentence, as it follows an unending spring of thought. And I liked the plaintive repetition of “the fact that,” so I built the book around that. (I think I’ve now used up all the “the fact that”s our teachers forbade us all to use at school!)
I’ve been rudely criticized in the past for using too many capital letters, but you know what? I DON’T CARE. What is wrong with using all the techniques at our disposal? I’m not spraying anybody’s linguine dinner with air freshener, I’m just reconsidering form. It’s not a crime. Yet.
I like illustrations too, and wish I had more. I don’t see why only children’s books get to have pictures.
El resto de esta maravillosa entrevista, aquí.