Thursday, October 28, 2010

Author Interview With Ivy Pochoda (+ Giveaway)

Ivy Pochoda is the talented young author behind The Art of Disappearing, a novel which delves into romance, magic, and humanity with absolute beauty. See my review here. After falling in love with The Art of Disappearing I had a few questions for Ivy which she was kind enough to answer.

  1. One of the main characters in The Art of Disappearing, Toby, is a magician without the illusions- what made you decide to include magic in your story? Did you ever dabble in magic tricks as a kid?

    No, I wasn't all that interested in magic as a kid. But thinking back on it, I did go to see Penn & Teller a lot. But their brand of magic is more cerebral. In high school I became interested in a sort of misogeny I detected in magic, as in all those cutting women in half trick and some sick part of me began to wonder whether there might be magicians out there who harbored secret wishes to do these things.

  2. You clearly capture the sensation of the two main locations the book takes place in, Las Vegas and Amsterdam. I have read that you lived in Amsterdam for many years but grew up in Brooklyn, where did you get your realistic description of the desert from? How important do you think setting is in writing?

    I made up most of my descriptions of the desert. I've been to Vegas a number of times and was perversely enchanted by it. I also was enchanted by the desert on the occasions I drove cross country. Setting is seminal to me. If I can't visualize where characters are, I'm lost.

  3. You were an extremely successful squash player. Do you think any of the skills you learned from being a competitive athlete translated into writing a book?

    Sure. Becoming a successful athlete is a long term goal. You say to yourself, this year I'm going to rise this many levels in the rankings, the next year, I climb so many more. It requires patience and the ability to see the larger picture, which is precisely what writing a novel is like.

  4. Is there any advice you have for other young aspiring authors that you learned on your quest to publish The Art of Disappearing?

    Never give up. Don't listen to others who say your work is too weird, to non-commercial. There is an audience out there.

  5. I absolutely loved The Art of Disappearing and I have to ask, what do you have planned next?

    I'm writing a novel set in Brooklyn. The world is short on those! (I kid.) But I love Brooklyn and have my own take on it. It's weird though, since writing this second novel, I've moved to Los Angeles, so I have to conjure places I know by heart from memory.

    St. Martins Publisher was kind enough to donate a copy of The Art of Disappearing to one lucky winner (Canada/US Only). There are three ways you can enter: 
    1) Leave a comment letting me know about a book that you fell in love with
    2) Subscribe to In The Next Room by Google Friend Connect
    3) Spread the word of this giveaway on your own blog and leave a link for me to check

    Please leave a separate comment for each entry as well as your e-mail address so I can contact you if you win. The contest will run until November 12th at midnight MST.

    CONTEST CLOSED. 

    Congrats Ruthie!

    17 comments:

    1. Great questions Zoe!

      I am in love with many books but one that comes to mind lately is The Alchemist by Paulo Coehlo...

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    2. Oh and I am a subscriber too!

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    3. I fell in love with Rant, by Chuck Palahniuk.
      (my email is sunnydee1031@yahoo.com)

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    4. Whoops! That previous post posted early. Ignore it. :/

      blog post: http://simmerdown.tumblr.com/post/1425296649/the-art-of-disappearing-giveaway

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    5. What? No free onion rings? My favorite book is the menu at Mr. Steer!

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    6. A squash player? That's so cool! I've read good things about this book and have it on my wishlist.

      A book I fell in love with .. I've been fortunate enough to buy and to receive some wonderful books this year. I'd have to say that the one that I loved the most was "Same Kind of Different As Me" ... it was just such an emotional story ... I was wiping away tears late at night just so I could keep the pages from blurring!

      Julie @ Knitting and Sundries

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    7. Oh! I also follow on GFC as jewelknits!

      knittingandsundries(at)gmail(dot)com

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    8. I fell in love with a Mountain Between Us by Charles Martin. It's a very different kind of story of love and survival.

      bgcchs(at)yahoo(dot)com

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    9. GFC Follower.

      bgcchs(at)yahoo(dot)com

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    10. Great interview! I'd love to win a copy of The Art of Disappearing!
      shetreadssoftly(at)gmail(dot)com

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    11. I'm a follower too!
      shetreadssoftly(at)gmail(dot)com

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    12. This year I fell in love with the book "Ghost Words and Other Echoes" by Adina Pelle. You can read my review here on my blog: http://ruthireads.blogspot.com/2010/06/book-review-ghost-words-and-other.html

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    13. I am now GFConnected with your blog!

      ruthcox @ abitosunshine dot net

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    14. Thanks for this contest!

      A book I fell in love with ... probably "Sweetness in the Belly" - I read it in a day, just could not put it down. So good.

      apereiraorama @ gmail.com
      Am now a follower!

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    15. It sounds like a great book. I fell in love with a young adult commedic romance called "My Ridiculous, Romantic, Obsessions." I don't think a book has made me laugh that hard in a while.

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    16. I also just signed up to follow.

      ke7yca at gmail dot com

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    17. I just finished reading The Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins... love, love, love!

      stephanie(.)pridgen(@)gmail(.)com

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    Your comments make my day!