Colum McCann Interview
How do you react when a story that you write bumps up against your own life? The new book by Colum McCann, Thirteen Ways of Looking, has a surprising personal edge to it. The story itself follows a retired judge, dealing with the indignities of age and going out to meet his son for lunch. The judge’s tale is intersected by the viewpoint of the detectives who are later trying to piece together his death from a seemingly random assault, through the cameras that captured his last day. So that’s the novella… But the book begins and ends with a note from McCann. An explanation about the assault he himself suffered during the writing of the book.
McCann is a literary heavyweight. He’s won the National Book Award, the IMPAC Dublin, and a long list of other prizes – with good reason. Colum finds the thread of humanity in great events, and spins empathy and poetry into the small moments.
Colum joined Sky Kirkham to discuss cameras, recovery, and happy endings. Originally broadcast 19/11/15. Thirteen Ways of Looking is out through Bloomsbury.