Thursday, July 22, 2010

WSJ on author Rick Moody and his new novel The Four Fingers of Death

The Wall Street Journal has devoted more than a few pixels to award-winning author Rick Moody and his new novel, The Four Fingers of Death (Hachette, July 2010), which “features a hard-luck writer in 2025, whose novelization of a remake of the 1963 horror cult classic, The Crawling Hand, spins a satirical tale of a returning Mars expedition.” First, there is an interesting interview in which Moody states that legendary SF writer Robert Heinlein “is not line-by-line a great writer.” Here’s the relevant excerpt:
WSJ: What do you make of those who see the work of Kurt Vonnegut Jr. and other science-fiction writers as genre fiction and not literary?

Rick Moody: I think he's unfairly shunted into a commercial spot in the food chain by literary writers. I think his books are really beautiful. They're simple, and they're simply told but they're also strange and emotionally complex and much worthy of attention. The genre stuff, which I did read, is challenging if you're really into literary writing. I think Robert Heinlein is not line-by-line a great writer. But I feel great affection for the way in which those books were important to younger people back in the '70s when I read them.
Next, there is the lengthy introduction to Moody’s new novel, The Four Fingers of Death. The opening lines:
People often ask me where I get my ideas. Or on one occasion back in 2024 I was asked. This was at a reading in an old-fashioned used-media outlet right here in town, the store called Arachnids, Inc. The audience consisted of five intrepid and stalwart folks, four out of the five no doubt intent on surfing aimlessly at consoles. Or perhaps they intended to leave the store when instead they were herded into a cluster of uncomfortable petrochemical multi-use furniture modules by Noel Stroop, the hard-drinking owner-operator of the shop in question. I'd been pestering Noel about a reading for some time, months, despite the fact that Arachnids was not celebrated for its calendar of arts related programming...
Finally, there is a short piece in which Moody discusses his favorite classic horror films.

The Four Fingers of Death crawls onto bookstores shelves July 28th.

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