• Eileen Myles, photo by Leopoldine Core.
    November 01, 2010

    Bookforum interviews Eileen Myles

    “If you’re interested in poetry, I’ll give you lesbianism, and if you’re interested in lesbianism, I’ll give you poetry.”

    Inferno is the latest book by poet, novelist, essayist, performer, and one-time presidential hopeful Eileen Myles. (It’s true, she ran as a write-in candidate in 1992.) Eileen did not call Inferno a memoir, even though it sort of is. Maybe one could call it a remembrance. Eileen calls it a novel. In the process of remembering, she lets go a frantic and enlightened rush of recall, impressions, and wit. Loosely modeled on Dante, the novel traces the character Eileen’s dual

    Read more
  • January 01, 2010

    Bookforum talks with John Irving

    John Irving always starts his stories at the end, which is why it has taken him nearly twenty years to write his twelfth novel, Last Night in Twisted River (Random House, $28). “The ending just eluded me,” he said in late September, when he spoke to me by phone from his Vermont home. “I knew only that there was a cook and his son, in a rough kind of place, and something happens to make them fugitives.” The protagonists in this exquisitely crafted, elliptically structured novel—a gripping story that spans five decades and extends across northern New England and Ontario—are Dominic Baciagalupo,

    Read more
  • September 01, 2009

    Bookforum talks with A.S. Byatt

    The prolific A. S. Byatt has been publishing novels since the mid-'60s (her first, The Shadow of the Sun, came out in 1964), but it wasn't until 1990, when she won the Booker Prize for Possession—the story of a pair of contemporary scholars whose research on two Victorian poets reveals an extramarital affair between them—that she became an international (literary) household name. But Dame Byatt, who was awarded the DBE ten years ago (and the CBE nine years earlier), credits not the Booker Prize but the Web with her considerably raised profile: "Everything I say or write is now perpetuated and

    Read more