At Electric Literature, in a fascinating conversation with J.R. Ramakrishnan, author Marie-Helene Bertino explains how she used time as a storytelling device in her latest novel, Parakeet. “I very much wanted to do to time, to use everything I could possibly think of, on a page with time, to help tell the story of time, of how sometimes it reverses, rewinds, moves faster and moves slower, the way it does when you’re in a catastrophic incident, and the way you do for every moment after that incident. The trauma forever changes you. Anytime you remember something, you re-experience it and time works in that same way on you again. It was a literal representation of how time begins to move independent of logic,” Bertino says. “I was focusing on trauma, but I think it works the same way when you’re in love. Days can feel like years when you’re waiting for a loved one to return or when you’re waiting to see your child or when you’re waiting to give birth to your child. There is nothing emotional that doesn’t land on time somehow. I was very literally trying to represent that.”
Miguel de Cervantes died and was buried 399 years ago, and apparently no one thought to mark his grave. But the Guardian has reported that after two years of searching a team of archaeologists have found and positively identified the Don Quixote author’s body, and there are plans to open his crypt to the public next year in honor of the 400th anniversary of his death.
NYC-area readers are invited to an event this Friday centered on the topic of marketing literature in the age of Gawker. At 7 p.m. I’ll be moderating a panel discussion that includes novelists Fiona Maazel and Tao Lin, literary agent Erin Hosier, and Christopher Kolouris of the website Scallywag & Vagabond. The event, which doubles as a launch party for Canteen magazine’s “Hot Authors” issue, also features two bands, a DJ, and an open bar. More info at 3rd Ward.