Monday, June 21, 2010

Chatting with MICHAEL KORYTA

This past week I had the wonderful opportunity to see Michael Koryta in three separate events. My first opportunity was in Chicago when I attended Printers Row (you'll hear about that more later), then he was in Lyndhurst (Cleveland) and finally he had an event at one of my favorite bookstores, The Mystery Lovers Bookshop in Oakmont, PA. Michael pointed out that it was three states in a week, and while I knew where I had been that fact didn't even strike me until he said it. I am happy, however, to report that no restraining order has been issued, at least as of this writing. ;-)

After this last event, Michael was nice enough to 1.) introduce me to Stewart O'Nan and 2.) sit down and chat with me about his writing and his most recent book, SO COLD THE RIVER. On camera even. And while I'm still working on improving my cinematography skills, I really think this is the best interview you'll find here on the blog, but I take no credit. Michael is very intelligent, absolutely fascinating, and above all else, one hell of a writer. I continue to be honored and humbled every time I'm able to have him involved here at the blog somehow. He has said that I'm a supporter of the mystery genre and his work in particular, and I am. Especially now that I've gotten over that supernatural jolt he threw us. But what Michael fails to mention is that back when I was even less of a nobody than I am today, he supported this blog. He was the very first interview on the blog, and despite how horribly bad I was at this interviewing stuff back then, he's still tolerating me today!

To give you some perspective on these videos, we were outside in Oakmont and situated between two streets. You can see in the background what a beautiful morning it was. The sky was gorgeous. We were actually on a cement staircase, and there wasn't a great place to put the video camera so you get the upward angle, but then again I'm allowed to put my heroes on pedestals, aren't I? So, try to overlook my less than stellar video skills and enjoy this informal, informative, fun interview with Michael Koryta:

Part I:

Part II:

Part III:

I still have difficulty listening to the sound of my own voice, but I enjoyed hearing what Michael had to say about all this. I hope you did, too. I'll be sharing more information from the events I attended as soon as I can get those written up.

My warmest thanks to Michael for taking time out to do this. He's been constantly on the go with his book tour - five states and three time zones in a week - so his willingness to give his time is beyond generous. I'm hoping that when he's knocking everyone off the New York Times Best Seller list he'll still be willing to chat with me. I also have to throw in a note of thanks to Stewart O'Nan, who informed me that he was up all night prepping Michael to sound intelligent for the interview. ;-) Ya done good, Stewart!

Happy Reading!

Note: If you'd like to check out more on Michael and his new novel, SO COLD THE RIVER, I encourage you to listen to his NPR interview here or listen to the archive of his live, online chat at Blog Talk Radio.


bermudaonion June 21, 2010 at 8:50 AM  

Fantastic interview! I had the chance to meet Michael briefly in New York, but I was too tongue tied to say much of anything.

Jen Forbus June 21, 2010 at 8:59 AM  

Kathy, that's so funny you mention being tongue-tied. I was just telling Michael on Saturday that I have SORROW'S ANTHEM and it's signed twice by Michael...because the second time I saw him I was still intimidated by him and was trying to ask him to personalize it, but obviously I was not communicating well due to my nervousness...he just signed it a second time! Ha!

Lori L June 21, 2010 at 1:37 PM  

I'm officially jealous - you got to meet Stewart O'Nan. Great interview with Michael Koryta!

Kay June 21, 2010 at 4:41 PM  

This interview was really good, Jen. I enjoyed it very, very much. I've just finished reading SO COLD THE RIVER and writing my thoughts about it. What a book! Truly. The interview was just the capstone I needed. Thanks for doing it and thanks to Michael for talking with you. He is going on my "must buy" list.

Jen Forbus June 21, 2010 at 5:58 PM  

Thanks for stopping by to check out the interview Lori and Kay! Michael is the one who really made this work. I can come up with questions, but when an author can make you feel comfortable asking them...that makes all the difference. And probably 40-50% of those questions were just off the cuff based on things Michael said. He's truly one of those people where you can't begrudge him one iota of success - he deserves every ounce.

Kay, I'm so glad you enjoyed SO COLD THE RIVER. And of course I'm tickled he's added to your must buy list. I'm anxious now to see CYPRUS HOUSE!

Naomi Johnson June 22, 2010 at 12:44 AM  

I can tell you have a strong comfort level talking to Michael. Great job, Jen, but I expected no less.

Beth F June 23, 2010 at 8:42 AM  

So Cold the River is here and I'm going to be listening soon.

What a week of chatting.

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