Bonnie Jo Campbell

“I mostly write about the working poor. Somehow, they're not being written about much anymore. I'm very interested in people who are in a situation that needs a little puzzling out. The thing that gets me started on a story is a person in a tough situation.”

—Bonnie Jo Campbell

Juan Rulfo

“Every author that creates is a liar; literature is a lie, but from that lie, a recreation of reality is born. Therefore, recreating reality is one of the fundaments of creation.”

—Juan Rulfo

Cynthia Ozick

“A writer is dreamed and transfigured into being by spells, wishes, goldfish, silhouettes of trees, boxes of fairy tales dropped in the mud, uncles' and cousins' books, tablets and capsules and powders...and then one day you find yourself leaning here, writing on that round glass table salvaged from the Park View Pharmacy--writing this, an impossibility, a summary of who you came to be where you are now, and where, God knows, is that?”

—Cynthia Ozick

Celeste Ng

“The writer's job, after all, is not to dictate meaning, but to give the reader enough pieces to create his or her own satisfying meaning. The story is truly finished—and meaning is made—not when the author adds the last period, but when the reader enters the story and fills that little ambiguous space, completing the circuit, letting the power flow through.”

—Celeste Ng

Joshua Ferris

“My first job is to write a book that I believe is compelling and deserves the long sustained attention that any novel requires, and to worry about the commerce only late in the game.”

—Joshua Ferris

Achy Obejas

“I've gotten to try on voices very different than my own, and I've become much more aware of structure than ever before. Also, you really weigh every word. There's no closer reading then when you read to translate.”

—Achy Obejas

Dennis Cooper

“My novels tend to take a long time to become exactly what they're going to be. They're fluid messes until I've done a ton of editing and refining and rewriting. When I write novels, I always make related scrapbooks to help me organize and test my intentions.”

—Dennis Cooper

Lily Hoang

“I like the way the essay makes my brain move. More than fiction, the essay—or my essays, at least—gives me permission to research and read and read and read. I like to saturate my brain with an idea and when I’ve reached max capacity, I start writing. It’s a frantic but intentional process. It’s fun!”

—Lily Hoang