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Tom McCarthy, author of Remainder and Men in Space


Below is the fifth and final part of my week-long interview with Tom McCarthy:


Mark Thwaite: Are you dismayed by the current state of the world!?


Tom McCarthy: How could I not be? Beckett’s answer to this question was ‘Let it burn!’ – but then he has Vladimir in Waiting for Godot say ‘Was I sleeping, while the others suffered?’, which I think is the single best and most moving line ever written by any writer, ever. Everything’s political, ultimately – but I think good writing disengages from politics at a superficial level in order to experience it more profoundly.


MT: What are you writing now?


TM: Pathetically, my answer to this question is the same as it was when you last asked it over a year ago. I’m just under half way through a novel called C, which is about mourning, technology and matter. I’m writing it very slowly. It’s called C because it has crypts, cauls, call-signs, cocaine, cyanide and cysteine in it. And carbon: lots of carbon.


MT: Anything else you would like to say?


TM: Keep on keeping up the good work. RSB’s become a staple of my daily meander through cyberspace: the criticism, the links, it’s all good – apart from the announcements of various great writers’ and critics’ deaths, which I always read first on your site. Stop killing off our heroes!

Readers Comments

  1. Matthew Tiffany Monday 24 September 2007

    Great interview. We at Condalmo are very much looking forward to Men in Space.

  2. RSB and its involvement in literary murder: good point Tom - there is probably a connection. Could it be 'The Curse of RSB'? It might be time to double bolt your door ...

    Mind you, McEwan goes on and on and on...

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