Richard Price (BSS #199)

Richard Price is most recently the author of Lush Life.

Condition of Mr. Segundo: Caught in a crime scene.

Author: Richard Price

Subjects Discussed: Setting a novel on the Lower East Side, tenement houses turned into tenement museums, juxtaposing a struggling Boho actor against the Old World, real estate as violence, gentrification, people who don’t see each other, knowing about the yuppie influx, having difficulties getting access to the NYPD, beating preconceived notions, OCD and fiction, making things up vs. reporting accurately, the facsimile of New York, not liking to write but liking to be finished, avoiding writing, Price and upward mobility, Child 44, adapting a book into a film, working with editor Lorin Stein, and writing Michael Jackson’s “Bad.”


Correspondent: Another thing I had read is that you don’t like to write. At least you do like to write. But then you also don’t like to write.

Price: I like to be finished. If I could take a pill that would knock me out and put me in a coma for two years, but when I woke up, there would be a completed manuscript that I would like, I’ll give you the two years.

Correspondent: (laughs)

Price: Yeah, I don’t like writing. I mean, this is kind of like abstract. But I find writing agony. Basically, you just sit there by yourself and rearrange twenty-six letters of the alphabet for decades on end. I mean, there’s no physicality to what you’re doing. There’s no hand-eye coordination. There’s no social element.

Correspondent: Well, there is hand-eye coordination now.

Price: What? Typing?


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