Marriott Marquis. November 14, 2007. By Tim Murphy
Have you ever pretended you read a book you never read?
“Oh, yeah. Virginia Woolf. I've never read her. And Infinite Jest. I have an opinion on the first 200 pages.”
Are you and Oprah chatting after your contretemps of a few years ago?
“We were talking every second Monday for a while, but it's dwindled down to every couple of months.”
Are you joking?
“Take that how you will.”
We just read that The Bluest Eye is one of the most-challenged books on school reading lists. Feelings?
“My sister wouldn't let her children read it. I never thought that was a children's book. How do you talk about incest to a child?”
Should Britney Spears write a memoir?
“I don't think so.”
“Not everyone's a writer.”
Who should write a memoir?
“Look—I can't take this anymore.”
Your latest novel was inspired by Walt Whitman. Is he sexy to you?
“Yes, because he was such a great artist. I've been known to get all hot for certain men who aren't technically attractive. Let's just say I would do Walt Whitman.”
Do you ever fake having read a book?
“No. I'm not the ingratiating type. And I'm a bookworm.”
Should Britney write a memoir?
“I think no one should ever write a memoir again.”
—Ellen Bryant Voigt
You say you read two books a night for your show. What's the key?
“Going at variable speeds. With fiction, you have to read carefully for at least the first part, because it's all about the style.”