Questions for Scott Turow from Amy Tan

Amy Tan

We reached Amy Tan, who along with Scott Turow is in the all author rock band, The Rock Bottom Remainders, and asked her for a couple questions for Scott Turow.

Tan: Apart from legal and procedural kind of research,  what kind of preparatory work or thinking do you do, .e.g, writing ideas in a journal, googling facts and figures, noting everyday details of life?  Do you fall into the common writer trap these days of Googling every little thing and over-researching as you write?

Turow: I don’t over-Google. I always bear in mind Robert Parker’s statement when we did a panel together years ago and someone asked Parker about the research behind the verisimilitude of his work.  “I’m just a good typist,” Parker said, meaning, I think, it is, after all, fiction. The most peculiar thing I do in terms of preparation is that I sort of think at the keyboard.  For about a year, I get up and just write, discovering characters, settings, histories, dialogue without a particular agenda.  Anything that moves me that morning.  Eventually something seems to be coming to form.

Tan: What is the question people never ask that you wish they would ask?

Turow: Mr. Turow, what do you have to say about the Swedish Academy’s shocking announcement this morning that you have won the Nobel Prize in Literature.