Monday, February 26, 2007

Goldberg: Variations - an interview

I thought about how exciting it would be to write a novel in thirty separate sections, in which each section would be completely self-contained yet the whole would add up to more than the sum of the parts. I began to sketch the thing. And, finally, I plunged into it.

The result was a disaster. It is all very well setting a short story in an earlier period, but I had no desire to ‘research the period’ as I would have had to do if I was to write a whole novel set in it. I not only do not particularly like historical novels ... I don’t believe in them or think they are a viable road for the modern writer to go down.
Gabriel Josipovici discusses how he overcame these problems in his novel Goldberg: Variations (published this week) set in part in an English country house around 1800. He also describes other of his recent works, published and unpublished. The latter includes the original novel of the German translation Nur ein Scherz that one reviewer said "should win the Cosí fan Tutte prize for the wittiest and most profound exploration of the relations between the sexes".

Also, check out the author's photograph at the end. Such light, such composition!

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