BSS #66: Daniel Handler


Author: Daniel Handler

Condition of Mr. Segundo: Petulant about people who use alter egos.

Subjects Discussed: Aub Zam Zam and the legendary bartender Bruno Mooshei, writing in public places, Adverbs as a novel, Nicholas Monsarrat’s Depends What You Mean By Love, how dwelling upon the thematic use of love turned into a 1,000 page first draft, connections between The Basic Eight and Adverbs, Jonathan Lethem’s binder collection, the nondescript nature of “Joe” as a character name, on writing characters within a certain age bracket, on repeating words in dialogue, bad puns, considering the literal nature of superlative sentiments, deconstructing the semantics of Dale Peck’s pugilistic review style, on being inspired by failed books, framing fiction within ornate structures, how the early stages of writing can confuse MBAs, flowcharts, Melville’s The Confidence-Man, on maintaining a cultural parallel universe, the use of pop culture in fiction, insouciant sex and reader shock in Watch Your Mouth, metafiction, John Barth, volcanos in San Francisco, and what really goes on among writers and producers in a Hollywood board room.

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