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I’m not sure that there has ever been a clearer expression of the deeply fucked-upedness of our attitudes toward sex.
Yes. “Cock sock” if you want the technical term.
Jill Bialosky is the author of three novels including “The Prize“;?a memoir, “History of a Suicide: My Sister’s Unfinished Life”; and four volumes of poetry, the most recent of which is “The Players.” ?She is an executive editor at W. W. Norton & Co.
It is a pleasure to be in conversation with you about “The Prize.” ?As you well know, I edited your novel “The Green Hour” and also your book of stories, “Self Portraits.” ?Both these awe-inspiring works also take art and love as subjects. ?I couldn’t have written “The Prize” at an earlier time in my life. ?It represents years of my thinking about art, betrayal, marriage, desire, love and integrity, and the way in which the past shapes the present. ?It is also about how professional lives shape and affect personal life. The two are intertwined. I grew up in a suburb in Cleveland, Ohio, in a modest home. Art was always at the periphery of my life. ?My first visit as a child to the Cleveland Museum of Art was transformative. ?I loved getting lost in the paintings and thinking about history and the way in which paintings can be a conduit. When I first moved to New York City 30-some years ago I was a young poet straight out of the University of Iowa’s Writer’s Workshop. It was a shark tank and I quickly learned that there were two kinds of writers, those who?were writing out of need and necessity and those who had grander ideas about the role art should play in their own lives. When I look back I think the seeds of this novel were germinating then. Since then I’ve lived and worked in New York City at the crossroad of where art and commerce converge. It’s palpable and continually fascinating. And you’re right, the novel, while also being set in the art world, is at its heart about a long marriage and the way in which an outsider threatens the marriage. I’ve juxtaposed this more conventional marriage with a marriage between two ambitious artists. I’ve been fascinated by “power couples.” We see them everywhere, in every field whether the art world, publishing, politics. I wanted to look at these very different marriages side by side, the rewards and the fallouts. ?You know, a novel is like a painting. It gets more complicated with each layer.