Thursday, July 12, 2012

Cheryl Strayed in Conversation

The Rumpus interviews writer Cheryl Strayed.

From the article...

Rumpus: Yes, I do know. There are certain stories that I always just keep coming back to and back to, in things I’ve published, and in things I’ve not yet. And I think if I do publish a memoir, I will still have to write about them.

Strayed: A lot of writers do that. You look at the bodies of work of some of the writers I admire most – Mary Gaitskill, Alice Munro. They’re each telling like a family of stories over and over again. I mean, some writers manage to be incredibly diverse. But most writers have a sense of what their territory is. And not that they don’t deliver something unexpected – they do – but they deliver something unexpected within the context of what we know belongs to them.

Rumpus: You describe in Wild how you chose your last name – Strayed. I wonder though whether to some degree you were also choosing it as a pseudonym, knowing you were hoping to write. Was there any aspect of hiding from people from your past?

Strayed: No, no. I never thought of the name as a pseudonym. I thought of it as just a name change.  And I broadcast it to everyone. I sent out a missive saying, “Now my name is Cheryl Strayed.” Actually, one of my fears when I changed my name was that I didn’t want people to lose track of me.

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