Alex Miller Interview

lovesong.jpg    As Alex Miller's ninth novel, Lovesong, is published, Angela Meyer was asked to interview the author by the Readings website.

The interview also carries the note that Angela is now acting editor of Bookseller+Publisher magazine. On top of her excellent weblog LiteraryMinded you wonder where she finds the time to sleep.
After finishing Landscape, Miller took time off to read. Sitting by the fire with his daughter, he was on the last few pages of Edward Said's Musical Elaborations when his daughter asked him what he was going to do next. Miller had just read Said's memory of seeing Louis Malle's film Les amants, which went something like this: 'An innocuous tale of a man, an unknown unnamed stranger who comes down the road and meets an unknown unnamed woman, and they become lovers, so then he moves on and everybody's happy.' He told his daughter, 'I'm going to write a simple love story'. And she said, 'Dad, love's not simple, you should know that'.
Miller's unadorned prose has a sneaking effect. Simple moments between characters catch you up hours, or even days, later. I relay this to Miller with the example of Landscape of Farewell. There is a scene where Max, the German character, is fetched a cane by Dougald, his Aboriginal friend and temporary housemate. I was telling my sister about how much I loved this moment -- the way Max imagines Dougald's perception of him as an old man, and accepts this -- and I searched for the moment in the book to read it to her, as I mark my favourite passages by turning the pages down. I was surprised to find I had not marked the passage at the time -- the moment in the story had only resonated much later.

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on November 5, 2009 9:04 AM.

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