from the gq interview with jonathan franzen

Do you have anything in mind for your next book?

To go back to what I said early on, what makes it hard to write stuff that's alive is not a lack of technique, or even an exhaustion of sources, it's the need for personal transformation, and personal transformation is destabilising, at this point it's not even something I want to think about. Life is okay now, and I know it won't always be, but I don't really like to think about the ways in which it won't always be, and yet those are the ways which will probably give rise to the next book, so that's really all I can say. I have some notions, and if the past is anything to go by, those notions will soon prove to be totally unworkable and wrong-headed. There's nothing I'd rather do that write a large novel. The year I wrote Freedom, 2009, was a great year - I really didn't do much, but for those few months I felt like I had a purpose and I was being myself. I think it's akin to training for the Tour De France or something like that, lots of unpleasant years building up to a few good weeks. I'm not kidding, I wrote the thing in 2009 - I set myself 1,000 words a day. The actual writing, at a certain point in a writers' life, becomes the fun and easy part.


No comments: