Trillium Book Awards Author Reading 2015

The Questionless Books Interview: Poet Natalee Caple

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The Questionless Books Interview: Poet Natalee Caple

In The Questionless Books Interview, I get a whole bunch of books people (from authors to editors to publishers to sales/publicity/production people, booksellers, designers, librarians, readers, etc) to "answer" a series of unspoken "questions". The results highlight a delightful mix of the opportunities and challenges facing our sector: from doom and gloom to sunshine and rainbows, and every irony in between.

Natalee Caple is the author of four books of fiction and two books of poetry, including the novel The Plight of Happy People in an Ordinary World (Anansi), the short story collection The Heart is its Own Reason (Insomniac), which was positively reviewed by the New York Times and has been optioned for film, the poetry collection A More Tender Ocean (Coach House), which was nominated for a Gerald Lampert Award, and the novel Mackerel Sky (Thomas Allen/St. Martin's). She lives in Toronto.

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I am a writer of many forms!

I am known to throw moustache parties and pretend to be a famous playwright.

I do this in spite of silence.

I do this because it is funny.

I do this when I am happy and when I am hungry and when I am lonely.

I do this by the fire and under the moon.

At her core, a Writer is a dreamer

As opposed to an Author, who is an animal part tiger, part hummingbird, part trembling leaf

A Writer is responsible for supporting her culture, her peers, her dreams

As opposed to an Author, who is responsible for mistakes and denials

At its core, Publishing is the act of recording the inner life of time

As opposed to Editing, which is the act of choreographing narrative

A Publisher should always believe in the future

As opposed to an Editor, who should always fall in love with the text

A Manuscript that's ready to be read by others is a baby in the middle of the road

As opposed to a Book that's ready to be read by others, which is a baby in the middle of the highway

A Manuscript should always contain clues and a code for the author so that she can find her way back to the book that was her companion

As opposed to a Book, which should always belong more to everyone than it does to its author

At its core, Bookselling is the art of reminding people that there is more to life than work and shopping

As opposed to Book Marketing, which is the art of tickling the reader until s/he sighs and surrenders

The smallest unit of narrative is : yes

The biggest reason to anticipate the future is that it makes no sense to anticipate the past

My greatest fear about the future is that in four years nothing I love will still be there to fight for

In the future we will all think wistfully almost with shock how beautiful we were and why couldn’t we see it?

At his/her core, a Reader is the finest of beings – a human who loves to live inside as much as outside

However, the ideal Reader is the one you love who knows how hard it was for you how much you risked

The views expressed in the Writer-in-Residence blogs are those held by the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of Open Book: Toronto.

Related item from our archives

George Murray

George Murray’s six books of poetry include The Rush to Here and The Hunter. His most recent books, Whiteout and Glimpse: Selected Aphorisms, are published by ECW Press. He is the editor of the popular literary website

Go to George Murray’s Author Page