By the fall, Nic says, the 4th Floor Chapbook Series Vending machine will be elevatored to the top floor of the Science Leadership Academy and open for business. It will offer young adult fiction and poetry from writers all across the country (submissions are still being accepted; more on that here) as well as work from the Science Leadership Academy’s own students. It may be the start of a new trend, or just something organically cool.
A poem written by a 17-year-old Douglas Adams, in which the Hitchhiker's Guide author manages to successfully pull off rhyming "futile" with "mute, while", and "exhausted" with "of course did", has been discovered in a cupboard at his old school.
The entire poem is there, so click on through.
I laughed out loud while I was reading it, and then, when it was over, I wanted to cry that we lost him so young.
Might that be why your fiction has been more readily admired in so-called literary circles—that it’s more engaged with human complexity and psychology?
It’s helped to make my stuff more accessible to people who don’t, as they say, read science fiction. But the prejudice against genre has been so strong until recently. It’s all changing now, which is wonderful. For most of my career, getting that label—sci-fi—slapped on you was, critically, a kiss of death. It meant you got reviewed in a little box with some cute title about Martians—or tentacles.
Also, this killed me: "My father knew Alfred Knopf personally. I’d had recorder lessons with Blanche Knopf when I was seventeen. Blanche—she was a real grande dame, oh God, she was scary. And I’d go in with my little tooter." Like, can you even PICTURE THAT? I can't.
And then later she compares genre fiction to poetry—because in both cases, you're writing within a form—and a response to that "I don’t read fiction because it isn’t real" statement and holy crow, I just want to QUOTE EVERYTHING.
So, yeah. It's an AWESOME interview, not to be missed.
Click on through to Tweetspeak for a whole bunch more (including Poe and Rumi and Eliot and Teasdale -- I guess I'll have to make my own Stein and Millay!), and a big infographic and all sorts of other good stuff.