Friday, January 22, 2010

Eric Puchner

Eric Puchner teaches at Stanford University, where he was a Wallace Stegner and John L’Heureux Fellow. His short stories have appeared in The Chicago Tribune, Zoetrope: All Story, The Missouri Review, Glimmer Train, Best New American Voices 2005, and other journals and anthologies. He has won a Pushcart Prize and the Joseph Henry Jackson Award for Music Through the Floor. His new book -- his first novel -- is Model Home.

The start of his Q & A with Erin Gilbert for Publishers Weekly:

Does your own childhood bear any resemblance to that of the Ziller kids?

Not in terms of any of the actual events being autobiographical, but I did spend my teen years in Southern California, partly in a gated community that was similar to the Herradura Estates from the novel, and we were downwardly mobile in the same way. My father was a failed businessman who constantly lived beyond his means, and some of the details from the book, like the furniture and cars being repossessed, were things I lived through. But in terms of the actual family itself, it bears absolutely no resemblance to my real-life family.

Real estate fiascos and financial struggles are pretty timely subjects. Was that intentional?

It wasn't actually. When I began, it was before the whole subprime loan disaster, and I was thinking about what happened to my own father. I hadn't anticipated the whole real estate crisis.

Is there any idea or feeling that you want your readers to be left with?

I had a friend...[read on]
Visit Eric Puchner's website.

--Marshal Zeringue