RARA-AVIS: WSJ Interview with Donald Westlake

From: Mario Taboada ( matrxtech@yahoo.com)
Date: 27 Aug 2001

Today's Wall Street Journal has an interesting article-interview with Donald Westlake, by the always reliable Tom Nolan. As usual, Westlake is starkly laconic, but he does say:

"All the time I was growing up, and well into my 20s, I liked fiction because truth was of no use to me; I had enough trouble. The beginning of creativity for me was being on my way to school and thinking: What am I going to say when I get there? That was the origin of it: fiction as salvation, or at least papering over the cracks. Fortunately, the thing of telling stories -- to myself, to my parents, to my teachers, to a policeman-- became so embedded in me that it turned I could not only survive by telling stories but make a living telling stories. That has always been an astonishment to me."

And later:

"I believe my subject is bewilderment, but I could be wrong."

I hope some day Westlake decides to write up his reminiscences (not, of course, if it means even one fewer Parker or Dortmunder novel...).




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