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Colson Whitehead interview

Colson Whitehead interview

In this Man Booker Prize 2017 longlisted author interview Colson Whitehead tells us whenever he thinks about being longlisted for The Underground Railroad Iggy Pop's ‘Lust for Life’ starts playing in his head. 

What has it been like to be longlisted?

Obviously, I'm pretty thrilled! Whenever I think about it, Iggy Pop's ‘Lust for Life’ starts playing in my head and I jump around until I get winded, which is usually quite quickly.

What are you working on next?

A shortish (I hope) novel that takes place in Florida in the 1960s.

What are you reading at the moment?

Rereading Moby Dick in tandem with a Melville biography. Why did they forsake you, Herman - why? Why?

What is your favourite Man Booker-winning novel?

Damn, I love of a lot of them, but I just had a flash memory of reading True History of the Kelly Gang while sitting on a stoop in the summer sun, so I'm going to go with that, so as to relive that lovely moment whenever I see this Q & A again.

Has the critical and public reaction to a tale of slavery surprised you?

Yes, but not because of the subject matter. My first book was about elevator inspectors, and I was sure that was going to be a massive world-wide smash...since then I just try to do my best with each book and lay off having any expectations about how they will be received. 

The Underground Railroad