Meg Wolitzer's latest novel is The Interestings.
From her Q & A with Claire Zulkey:
At what point while writing The Interestings did it occur to you that this would be a book where people would discuss its role as literary fiction versus "women's fiction"?--Marshal Zeringue
When I was writing it, I was very engaged in the writing and the technical issues and all the endless stuff I needed to do, so I objectified the book surprisingly little.
On average, have you received different input on the book from your male versus female readers?
It's hard to say if there's a general difference in their reactions. Though I have definitely heard from more men with this book than with any of my others.
How cognizant of other people's work are you when you write? I know I waffle between feeling inspired by good and related writing but also thinking "Well my work is just going to be inferior or derivative so why even bother."
Sometimes when I'm writing I feel as if I need to read something great. It's sort of like the way people used to talk about enriching "iron-poor blood." It's as if I think my own "blood" needs some enriching, and maybe, through some very subtle act of supplementation, I can get a dose of those good qualities into my work without there being even a trace of the derivative. I think, though, what I really want, in those moments, is to be...[read on]