Sarah Kinson interviews Alan Garner at the Guardian. It is not a particularly forthcoming interview, and yet he's so much one of my favorite children's book writers that I couldn't not link to it...
On a related note, I feel like a human being again this week for the first time in a while, due to the fact that I'm back at work on writing-related stuff. I love all the other aspects of my job too, but writing time is indispensable, I do not thrive when I don't have it. As far as the fix goes, revision is to writing as methadone is to heroin, and for the next few weeks at least I'm really revising rather than writing, but it still gives me a feeling of expansiveness in the chest & enriched humanity, a great relief (though school stuff still looms large over the rest of the month). Expect me to emerge from the cocoon sometime in early June, unless I become enraptured by the next set of writing tasks--but at least I should be a bit less antisocial.
A couple fun books read this week around the edges: Holly Black's latest, Ironside (very enjoyable); and the quite delightful American Shaolin: Flying Kicks, Buddhist Monks and the Legend of Iron Crotch: An Odyssey in the New China by Matthew Polly. I seriously couldn't put it down, it is a most gripping read! I am often suspicious of these wise-cracking memoir-writers, but in this case was totally won over both by the narratorial persona and by the content. The Shaolin temple! Training! China! Great stuff.
(I was eyeing the Shaolin kung fu class on the Columbia gym schedule last summer, we all need to release our inner eight-year-old boy sometimes, only then I fell in love with Iyengar yoga instead which really suits my purposes much better, especially since the running coach I worked with in the fall is a stickler for health & safety & strictly banned us all from doing anything obviously injury-producing, which certainly includes kickboxing and martial-arts-type stuff. And now I am obsessed with this whole triathlon training project, with yoga ongoing but also held in reserve for some future point about seven years from now where I might lose interest in racing and suddenly have the training time to do yoga every day and become much more knowledgeable and expert. But it would be interesting to do a bit of martial arts training, I have liked the tiny bit of kickboxing I've done, only the gym-type cardio kickboxing workouts which I have never tried seem way too much like an evil and cunning repackaging of 1980s-style aerobics, not at all my cup of tea...)