My Interview with Chelsea Martin at The Rumpus

From the interview:

John Madera: When film director Pedro Almodóvar was asked if his movie Bad Education was autobiographical, he responded, “Everything that isn’t autobiographical is plagiarism.” So how much of your writing is autobiographical? How much do you distinguish fact from fiction and vice-versa in your writing? Would you talk about the various personas you adopt in these stories?

Martin: I basically have two ways I start writing. Either I’ll start with something about myself, or something that happened to me that seemed important, or I’ll start with some idea I have that doesn’t have much to do with me. But one will always lead to the other.

When something is finished, distinguishing “fact” from “fiction” is a matter of “the first part of that sentence really happened but it leaves out this important detail, and the second and fourth parts of that sentence also came directly from life, but the first and third parts came from some thoughts I had while watching a movie, and the sentence after it I just thought would be really funny.”

I mean, there is a lot of stuff I write that makes it seem like my intention is to make people think I’m speaking about myself entirely, and it is my intention to make people think that, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that’s what it is.

One response to “My Interview with Chelsea Martin at The Rumpus

  1. John — great interview. As the Japanese say, enjoy, enjoy, very enjoy.

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