Friday, May 15, 2009

The Web Cast of The Story Prize Event: Jhumpa Lahiri, Joe Meno, and Tobias Wolff

For those who missed it (and those who want to see it again and again and again), the Web cast of The Story Prize event is up on In case you've forgotten, Jhumpa Lahiri, Joe Meno, and Tobias Wolff (spoiler alert!)—the winner—read from their work and discussed it onstage. And by the way, that's novelist Helen Schulman introducing the event. She's head of the fiction writing department at the New School.

The evening is always a blur to me, so I'm glad that I can watch it later and critique my own performance. I don't prepare questions ahead of time, so I'm never quite sure what I've said.

Some things I didn't remember from my conversations with the three finalists:
  • Jhumpa Lahiri talking about how her children keep her grounded as a writer.
  • Joe Meno comparing his approach to writing to visual artists' approach to their work.
  • Tobias Wolff revealing that a real-life bank robbery a friend had witnessed inspired him to write "Bullet in the Brain."
I'm also struck by how much each writer has to say about their thought processes.