Q&A: Carrie Snyder

Author, Girl Runner


Carrie Snyder was a surprise Writers’ Trust fiction prize short-lister for Girl Runner, her story of a female long-distance Olympian. She reads from the novel November 1, 5 pm, at the Lakeside Terrace and joins the How We Live Now panel, November 2, 2 pm, at the Fleck. See listing.

Summarize your book in a tweet, i.e., less than 140 characters.

Aganetha Smart, a talented runner famous in the 1920s, lives alone and forgotten in a nursing home, now 104. But one last adventure awaits.

Who should star as you in your biopic? Why?

Emma Watson as my younger self. She’s strong yet small, like me. Optionally, Jessica Chastain, who is similar to me in age and who also has red hair.

What important book have you pretended to have read? Were you convincing?

Ulysses by James Joyce. I didn’t even try that hard, just nodded and smiled in hopes of not revealing my ignorance. I was 21 at the time. I don’t pretend any more.

Recount your weirdest encounter with a fan.

The guy who asked me to sign my book: “Thanks for the great night, [insert guy’s name here],” so he could show his ex-wife. Um, no.

Lena Dunham, creator and star of TV’s Girls, has received $3.5 million for her first book. Care to comment?

She’s amazing. Imagine having the confidence and talent to craft a career like that in one’s 20s. I hope she keeps killing it for years to come.

You’re ready to write the next bestselling dystopia for young adults. What’s the premise?

A killer virus is spreading, the bees are dying, trains carrying volatile liquids annihilate entire towns, and in the great nation to the south, even small children are being taught how to use the automatic weapons that every household stockpiles.

Do writers make good lovers? Why?

No better or worse than anyone else. But be warned, partners may discover they’ve been fictionalized and eternally pinned to the page.

Do book reviews still matter, or can you accomplish everything you need from social media?

I’m an old-school blogger, so I love social media. But let’s be honest. It’s exhausting and can turn a person into a one-note, one-woman publicity department. Therefore, it’s a pleasure to be read and reviewed.

Whose memoir do you not want to read? Why?

Our dogs’, Suzi & DJ’s. Actually, I would like to read that. What the hell is going on inside their tiny, neurotic brains?

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