Victor LaValle on spilling family secrets in writing

Victor LaValle, a friend of a friend, is a great conversationalist and an even better writer, and in this brief video he makes me feel a little less like a jerk for shit-talking my parents* in my writing.

LaValle’s next novel, a “contentious story about a man, a woman, and a monster baby,” is scheduled for publication in 2009. A little more:

While he was trying to find his way into this story, he returned to an old favorite, The Haunting of Hill House, Shirley Jackson’s chilling 20th-century ghost tale. “I remember first reading it as a kid and the line ‘Hill House, not sane, stood by itself,'” he says. “It still gives me shivers of joy to read that book, and I understood how the best stories always give you something right from the onset.”

* Not that I feel too terribly bad about it anyway, honestly. After all, they chose to continue being themselves even though, at a suspiciously early age, I started carrying a pencil around and evincing an unhealthy preoccupation with the macabre. They were, as the lawyers say, on notice.

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