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Wordsmith
Tarri
Posts: 457
Registered: ‎02-26-2007
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Re: Questions for Colson Whitehead?

[ Edited ]
Thank you for sharing your book and your time with us.  All of my questions have been answered, so I'd just like to tell you that your book is great and I look forward to reading the rest of your books. 
Message Edited by Tarri on 03-07-2009 08:50 PM
Distinguished Wordsmith
Carmenere_lady
Posts: 529
Registered: ‎11-05-2006
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Re: Questions for Colson Whitehead?

Mr. Whitehead,  When I registered for this First Look Book selection I had great expectations.  Finally, a story that seemed different from all the rest, something new from which I could learn something.  Well, I just have to say, you did not disappoint.  I never knew that middle class african-american families summered in Sag Harbor, I never knew that they felt, p51, 'white people won't lay a hand on us, we have to heal ourselves" and so became professional drs. etc. 

Sag Harbor was a delightful story and is sure to be a great summer read for those less fortunate than us first lookers who had the opportunity to read it here first.  Perhaps a summer movie in a couple of years?

I hope when you go back to Sag it will be to the Hempstead House. I'm hoping it's got to be a real place because the love affair Ben has for it seems so real and intense. 

Wish you continued success and in case you didn't know (but surely you must).......Ain't no stoppin' you now.

Lynda

"I think of literature.....as a vast country to the far borders of which I am journeying but will never reach."
The Uncommon Reader


"You've been running around naked in the stacks again, haven't you?"
"Um, maybe."
The Time Traveler's Wife

It is with books as with men; a very small number play a great part.
Voltaire
Correspondent
SandyS
Posts: 148
Registered: ‎12-28-2006
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Re: Questions for Colson Whitehead?

Thank you so much for the opportunity to enjoy your book.  I really had difficulties in the beginning - so I started over.  What a smart thing for me to do.  I was able to start connecting with characters, although sometimes lengthy descriptions would lose me.

 

Regarding the cover I see off to the right.  How much input do you have in the choosing of a cover.  Do you see several selections or does the editor just choose?

 

Again, thanks.

 

SandyS

Author
Colson_Whitehead
Posts: 53
Registered: ‎01-22-2009
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Re: Questions for Colson Whitehead?


Vermontcozy wrote:
You survived!!! Your book brought back so many memories,LIE, music,language,feelings,and big transitions for all of us in the 80's.90's, it became for me a kinder world,and the separation wasn't as significant .Enjoy your Family,and never stop writing and sharing with us...Vtc.....

 

 VTC,

 

 

I did survive -- thanks for the help!

 

All Best

 

Colson

 


Learn more about Sag Harbor.

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Author
Colson_Whitehead
Posts: 53
Registered: ‎01-22-2009
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Re: Questions for Colson Whitehead?


Thayer wrote:

Colson,  One of the things I most like about this book club is that we enjoy the opportunity to read books that some of us would probably not choose for ourselves. Thus we are fortunate to be introduced to  writers of immense talent such as yourself, that otherwise we might have missed out on.

 

When I received my copy, I was surprised at the lack of artwork on the cover. For a moment I was taken aback as so many of our choices tend to be visual. As I finished your delightful work, I think it  ironic that alot of the conversation has leaned toward the  judgemental aspects of our society based on visual perception. Who ever said "you can't judge a book by its cover" was spot on. What a shame humanity is not more inclined.

 

My question is this, as a former critic yourself, is it hard for you to "put your work out there" to be scrutinized, dissected and frankly, at times, possibly over-analyzed? (I am surprised no one has brought up your signature on the book's cover. That curve at the crest of your h HAS to mean something, right?)  :smileywink:

 

I enjoyed your book immensely and plan to purchase your other books as well. I am anxious to explore the diversity of your work. Thank you for such a wonderful book and for your time and patience with us all.

 

 

 


 

Hey Thayer,

 

 

Thanks for participating....

 

I think that as a former critic, I shouldn't take bad reviews that seriously -- someone gets out on the wrong side of bed, and woe to anyone they have to review that day. I've seen it happen!

 

As for overanalyzing the work -- I understand that once it is out of my hands, I can't control what happens to it. It's everyone's who deigns to pick it up. I have received some weird interpretations over the years, but you just shrug. What are you going to do?

 

 All best,

 

Colson


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Author
Colson_Whitehead
Posts: 53
Registered: ‎01-22-2009
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Re: Questions for Colson Whitehead?


artist4nature wrote:

I have enjoyed reading your advanced copy of "Sag Harbor" - thanks for the opportunity.

 

I would like to know who are your favorite authors?

 

 Have you read "Two Rivers" by T. Greenwood or "Blonde Roots" by Bernadine Evaristo.

Both of these book deal with issues of race.

 

Looking forward to your next endeavor.   JP


 

 

Artist,

 

Thanks for the question!

 

I think I named a few earlier in the thread, but let me add:

 

Peter Carey

Toni Morrison

Thomas Pynchon

 

How's that? I haven't read those two authors, but I'll keep an eye peeled!

 

Thanks again,

 

Colson


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Contributor
AMoriarty
Posts: 13
Registered: ‎12-20-2008
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Re: Questions for Colson Whitehead?

I don't really have a question for Mr. Whitehead but I did want to thank him for the opportunity to read his book. I enjoyed it very much. You were able to bring back many memories from my childhood, but more importantly, you actually revived the 'feelings' I had as a youth summering at the beach, living through those horrible teenaged years, living in a family that was slightly less than perfect, and allowed me to see some of it again through the eyes of an adult. And although it might not have been your main purpose when writing the novel, you also opened the eyes of many of your readers in matters of racial relations and misconceptions on all sides. You have a talent for capturing a moment and making it real to the reader. Thank you for sharing it with us.

 

Anne

Inspired Contributor
Coral50
Posts: 160
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Questions for Colson Whitehead?

<<benji knows certain things, whether or not he can admit them to himself fully. he approaches knowledge and enlightenment, shys away, and then get bold and moves a little closer. so the way he is telling his story mimics this process.

 

hope that helps!

 

colson>>

 

Hi Mr Whitehead

Thank you for the pleasure of reading your pre-published book.

Your explanation to 'deaver' answers my question. I read about a quarter of the way through and needed to start over so I could get the real sense of your story. It is written in a quirky, poetic style. Your use of words is great, though I would have liked more flow of story. 

From this experience I plan on checking out your last few books. 

Thank you

Cora 

Inspired Correspondent
libralady
Posts: 159
Registered: ‎09-23-2008
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Re: Questions for Colson Whitehead?

[ Edited ]

Thank you so much for being so generous with both your book and your time!  I have truly enjoyed reading all the questions/comments and your responses.  Did you know what you were getting into when you agreed to do this?  :smileysurprised: Just kidding.  My last question for you is:  Are you already thinking of what your next book might be?

 

Thanks again, and BTW, I do plan to check out your previous books!  :smileywink:  I thnk I read that you will be in my area, Washington DC sometime in the upcoming months. I will definitely try to make it to that event. 

 

Take care.

Message Edited by libralady on 03-10-2009 10:37 AM
Message Edited by libralady on 03-10-2009 10:38 AM
"Sow today what you want to reap tomorrow"
Frequent Contributor
sylvia387
Posts: 43
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Questions for Colson Whitehead?

What an absolute pleasure it has been to read your book.

 

I am curious how you feel about the possibility of a TV or movie contract from this writing.

I think the book style lends itself to a visual medium as well.  Have any of your previous writings been contracted for screen?

 

As one of my favorite phrases from page 22, can I convince you to title a future novel "Nocturnal Soliloquies?"

 

I wish you much success with this book...and hope to see you in the promotional days to come.

 

Sylvia

 

 

Sylvia

No expectations..No disappointments
Author
Colson_Whitehead
Posts: 53
Registered: ‎01-22-2009
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Re: Questions for Colson Whitehead?


SandyS wrote:

Thank you so much for the opportunity to enjoy your book.  I really had difficulties in the beginning - so I started over.  What a smart thing for me to do.  I was able to start connecting with characters, although sometimes lengthy descriptions would lose me.

 

Regarding the cover I see off to the right.  How much input do you have in the choosing of a cover.  Do you see several selections or does the editor just choose?

 

Again, thanks.

 

SandyS


 

 

SandyS,

 

 

I get approval of the covers, but I rarely have ideas to offer to help them out. Frankly, once the book is done, I'm too exhausted to muster enough enthusiasm to think about what the cover should be!

 

Thanks for joining the group!

 

Colson


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Author
Colson_Whitehead
Posts: 53
Registered: ‎01-22-2009
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Re: Questions for Colson Whitehead?

 


libralady wrote:

Thank you so much for being so generous with both your book and your time!  I have truly enjoyed reading all the questions/comments and your responses.  Did you know what you were getting into when you agreed to do this?  :smileysurprised: Just kidding.  My last question for you is:  Are you already thinking of what your next book might be?

 

Thanks again, and BTW, I do plan to check out your previous books!  :smileywink:  I thnk I read that you will be in my area, Washington DC sometime in the upcoming months. I will definitely try to make it to that event. 

 

Take care.

Message Edited by libralady on 03-10-2009 10:37 AM
Message Edited by libralady on 03-10-2009 10:38 AM

 

Libralady,

 

 

Thanks for all your  thoughtful questions and posts over the course of this....

 

Errr, no I didn't know what I was getting into!

 

But it was all great. You guys are really swell.

 

You know, I usually know what I'm going to do next, but Sag Harbor was such a different book for me that I've been taking it easy, enjoying the fact that it is done. I have a few ideas but I haven't figured which on is the right one, if any of them are.

 

And that's okay!

 

All best

 

Colson

 

 


Learn more about Sag Harbor.

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Author
Colson_Whitehead
Posts: 53
Registered: ‎01-22-2009
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Re: Questions for Colson Whitehead?


sylvia387 wrote:

What an absolute pleasure it has been to read your book.

 

I am curious how you feel about the possibility of a TV or movie contract from this writing.

I think the book style lends itself to a visual medium as well.  Have any of your previous writings been contracted for screen?

 

As one of my favorite phrases from page 22, can I convince you to title a future novel "Nocturnal Soliloquies?"

 

I wish you much success with this book...and hope to see you in the promotional days to come.

 

Sylvia

 

 


 

Sylvia,

 

Thanks for the kind words. I'm very glad you joined us.

 

 

There have been some rumblings about adapting Sag Harbor, but nothing definite yet. I'll keep ya posted!

 

The Intutionist had been optioned a few times, but nothing has ever come of it. It's a tough nut to crack.

 

Having someone option your book is a bonus. Rarely does it ever come to something, I've found. But it's nice to get a little cash anyway.

 

All best

 

Colsob


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Author
Colson_Whitehead
Posts: 53
Registered: ‎01-22-2009
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Re: Questions for Colson Whitehead?

 

 

Hey Guys,

 

And to all the folks who took the time out to hang out here and read Sag Harbor -- thanks a lot! It's always strange to see your book make its way out into the world, and you guys have given it a nice sendoff before it heads off into the rest of the world, a few weeks from now. Hopefully it will find some more nice readers like you all!

 

Thanks tons,

 

Colson


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Correspondent
jabrkeKB
Posts: 164
Registered: ‎11-15-2008
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Re: Questions for Colson Whitehead?

Thank you Mr. Whitehead for sharing your book with the forum.  I enjoyed your style of writing.  Thank you for taking the time to answer questions, I hope this has been an enjoyable experience for you.
Inspired Contributor
nadine1
Posts: 41
Registered: ‎10-16-2007
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Re: Questions for Colson Whitehead?

As I was reading your book, I noted your painstakingly detailed descriptions and rich vocabulary.  I wish my high school students could take a writing lesson from you!

Contributor
KimberlyH
Posts: 17
Registered: ‎12-24-2008
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Re: Questions for Colson Whitehead?

Colson,

A very nice book.  I had some trouble getting my groove in the first pages, but I was hooked after your reasoning behind NP's name.  Too flipping funny!  As a child of the fab 80's, I started having flashbacks of all those things that, well, I kind of wanted to forget.  Like those MC Hammer pants that were of the geometrical 80's print and color, and whose crouch was at my knees.  Why would anyone need so much room down there - come on!  I really pulled them out of the closet the other day and had a good laugh!  Have you seen those kids starting to pull out some of those fashions again?  Like my favorite - footless tights.  I am just waiting to see someone fold and roll their jeans at the ankles to make them tighter because that was really just so sexy! 

So many things that we did back in the day that my daughter will never have the chance to do.  The world really seems a different place now or maybe it is just me adding on the pounds ~ ops! ~ that would be years.  I can remember being at home alone at an early age.  Latch key kid as soon as I could turn the lock with free range of the house and glorious refrigerator.   Now you worry about someone grabbing your kid on the walk home from school.

 

Thank you for putting your book out there for First Look.  I would have never picked it up if you had not, and that would have been a shame.  Those were great times. 

 

Kimberly H 

Distinguished Correspondent
Jennmarie68
Posts: 127
Registered: ‎02-09-2009
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Re: Questions for Colson Whitehead?

I don't know why this just came to me, but it did, so I guess I'll ask, because if I don't it will haunt me forever...

 

I don't know when you began the concept stage or the writing stage of this book, but given the problems that James Frey faced after his book was found to be a farse, did you have any reservations about writing a semi-autobiographical novel?

 

Now I haven't read A Million Little Pieces, and so I can't compare your novel to it. Also the fact that you've kind of distanced yourself from the "this is an autobiography" stance lends me to believe that this won't be a problem for you, thus why I said I have no idea where this thought came from....

 

But as a author and being that you were writing this type of book, did the fallout from Mr. Frey's book ever cross your mind? 

 

On another note, I want to thank you again for allowing us to read your book, I am truly enjoying every page and have recomended it to anyone that will listen.

 

-Jennifer

Nobody can make you feel inferior without your consent.

Eleanor Roosevelt
Distinguished Scribe
blkeyesuzi
Posts: 730
Registered: ‎01-26-2008
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Re: Questions for Colson Whitehead?

Hi Colson,

 

I hope you're still available to answer this question.  I was looking on your website and saw that you are going to be in LA on May 20.  Would you consider a visit to Orange County while you're visiting this part of the West Coast?  There's a great Barnes and Noble in South Coast Plaza located in Costa Mesa, CA and it's quite popular.  Perhaps you'd consider adding it to your busy schedule? 

 

please?  

 

 

Suzi

"I still find each day too short for all the thoughts I want to think, all the walks I want to take, all the books I want to read, and all the friends I want to see. " --John Burroughs