Marisa Silver made her fiction debut in The New Yorker when she was featured in that magazine's first Debut Fiction issue. Her collection of short stories, Babe in Paradise was published by W.W. Norton in 2001. It was named a New York Times Notable Book of the Year and was a Los Angeles Times Best Book of the Year.
In 2005, W.W. Norton published her novel, No Direction Home. Her novel, The God of War, was published in 2008 and was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for fiction. Her second collection of stories, Alone With You, was published in April, 2010. Winner of the O. Henry Prize, her fiction has been included in The Best American Short Stories, The O. Henry Prize Stories, as well as other anthologies. Her novel Mary Coin (2013) is also a New York Times Bestseller.
Marisa Silver's website
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BJ Hegedus chats with Marisa Silver about
Alone With You
Are you an eeker or a gusher? Do you have to go back and enlarge what you have first written or do you delete and tighten things up?
I love that distinction eeker vs. gusher! I am definitely an eeker. I work slowly and I attempt to work steadily. I try to write a certain number of pages every single day. But I rarely sit down and have any idea of what I'm going to do next. I feel like I'm always in a dark tunnel pawing my way forward, tripping, bashing my head it ain't pretty!
Do you have your stories figured out before you put pen to paper or do you let them work themselves out as you go along?
I never have stories worked out. I usually begin with a shred of a notion, some particular situation that interests me or a relationship that feels potent. My starting points are never concrete. It feels more as if I'm circling something, getting closer and closer each time I circle until I've focused the idea to a point where it feels like it's giving back to me (and hopefully the reader) some notion of what brought me to it. I feel pretty strongly that it is better for me never to know where I'm heading. If I know, then the...
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