Jonathan Lethem and David Gates Talk Facebook, Internet, The Future

By

“I have no idea how to handle this new mode of living (I guess “living” is the word) in fiction. I probably spend more time e-mailing and reading online than I do having non-virtual human contact—and I bet I’m not that unusual. If my characters were like that, would their lives be eventful enough to write about? On the other hand, if I write about people for whom the internet is—as far as the reader can see—peripheral or nonexistent, am I not essentially writing historical fiction?”

— David Gates

PEN American has published an absolutely wonderful email exchange between Jonathan Lethem and David Gates in which they discuss reality, David Shields, the future of fiction, Facebook and Twitter, the importance of writing on a computer without an Internet connection, and lots more. (via Book Bench)


Seth Fischer's writing has appeared or is forthcoming in Best Sex Writing 2013, Buzzfeed, PankGuernica, Lunch Ticket, Gertrude, and elsewhere. His Rumpus piece "Notes from a Unicorn" was listed as a notable essay in The Best American Essays 2013. He teaches and tutors at Antioch University Los Angeles and Writing Workshops Los Angeles, and he was a Jentel Arts Residency Program Fellow. Find more writing of his writing at www.seth-fischer.com, or reach him @sethfischer. More from this author →