March 1, 2013 by Nathaniel Tower
Today I bring you The Next Big Thing from Marc Vincenz and Bill Yarrow. Marc and Bill originally posted these interviews on Facebook a few days ago. Now, in this Write, Juggle, Run exclusive, Marc and Bill re-share their interviews for the world to see.
Marc: And here we go…avec un verre du vin: in this case, a bottle of Luis Felipe Edwards from somewhere “terraced” in Chile called the Cholchagua Valley. Apparently there are herds of genetically manipulated bovines dangling amongst the grapes over there.
Le fabulous Yahia Lababidi tagged me to take part in The Next Big Thing, a series of self-interviews with poets and writers (are they the same?) which perpetrates some kind of network writer’s marketing viral infection – something I’m personally not immune to.
It works like some form of reality TV / author-self-introspection, which earnestly speaking, is not what I’m about – except for in a self-glorification, self-promotional sense. Ergo: please read books – mine or anyone else’s. Enrich the flora, enrich the mind.
Through a series of interviews rather than by association something irrational occurs and people actually start purchasing books – either that, or we’re all mildly amused by this self-glorification act.
Bill: Marc Vincenz tagged me to take part in The Next Big Thing, a series of self-interviews in which poets and writers are all asked the same nine questions. (I’ve taken the liberty to rewrite the questions to make them grammatical.)
What is the title of your book?
Marc: Mao’s Mole.
Bill: Pointed Sentences.
Where did the idea for the book come from?
Marc: The idea – or fruition – of the book came from living over ten years in China, having been born in Hong Kong during Mao’s Cultural Revolution; in essence, a distillation of any and everything that I had experienced in and with China through something like forty years of life – real or imagined.
Bill: From under the floorboards. [translation by Constance Garnett.]
What genre is your book?
Marc: Poetry, sort of. Narrative, imagined, persona and re-lived – with a bit of extra modernist “zing” thrown in to the mix.
Bill: The first one.
If your book was made into a movie, what actors would you choose to play the part of your characters?
Marc: Ah. If Yul Brynner were still alive, he should be the lead role: the revolutionary outsider continuously trying to adapt to his circumstances – with failed consequences; someone like the character he played in the The Brothers Karamazov – a kind of James Dean of the Russian Revolution. Mao would most certainly be played by Peter Sellers, as would the Empress Dowager and a minimum of five characters in the book. Terry Gilliam would have directed the movie version.
Bill: Lya de Putti, Maria Falconetti, Vera Baranovskaya, and Jerry Mathers as “the Beaver.”
What is a one-sentence synopsis of your book?
Marc: We are all but microbes in the palm of a giant.
Bill: “the mind as Ixion” (Pound, Canto CXIII)
How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?
Marc: Four or five years.
Bill: How long did it not take?
Who or what inspired the writing of your book?
Marc: China, the world. Conformity. The modern, brand-absorbed world we live in. Myths and mythology. Ten plus years living in China; forty plus years experiencing China from a distance or close up.
Bill: The smashing of my windshield by a flying wrench.
What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
Marc: Honestly speaking although the over-arching fascination appears to be with China and its modern history, this book is about how icons come about; about how mythology is created, about how modern life is lived. Mao’s Mole is your mole – even though you may not yet know it. This book is about how an icon, becomes a mole, becomes a logo.
Bill: It’s written in “gangnam” style.
Who published or will publish your book?
Marc: Mao’s Mole will be published by the fiercely-independent-more-than-lively NeoPoiesis Press this Summer.
Bill: My book was published by BlazeVOX in January 2012.
Now tag some writers to go next.
Marc: My tagged writers for next Wednesday and their forthcoming or recently released books are:
Tom Bradley, We’ll See Who Seduces Whom (Unlikely Books, 2013)
Susan Lewis, How To Be Another (Cervena Barva Press, 2013)
Bill Yarrow, Pointed Sentences (Blazevox, 2012)
Joani (J.P.) Reese, Dead Letters (Cervena Barva Press, 2013)
Bill: Now I’m tagging the following writers to answer the same questions:
Robert Vaughan (already did it)
Nina Corwin (already did it)
Jim Valvis (declined)
Karren Lalonde Alenier (already did it)