With his second novel The Wettest County in the World out now, Matt Bondurant kicks off the Fictionaut Five, a new feature in which we ask one of our members a few hard-hitting questions.

“Brilliantly conceived, and so close to home, this novel proves Matt Bondurant’s burgeoning talent — a book for thirsty American readers to guzzle down, a book for all young American writers to admire,” writes Alan Cheuse, author of The Fires.

If you weren’t a writer, how would you spend your time?

I would likely be a literature professor who quietly ground out a modest profession at a small liberal arts college somewhere. Wait, that is how I spend my time. If not that, I would likely work in the basement of some kind of museum, or perhaps in public radio.

Which book do you wish you’d written?

Focault’s Pendulum by Umberto Eco or Tender is the Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald.

Name one website you couldn’t live without.

Life without iTunes would be a sucking void for me. I realize this is quite sad.

What are you working on now?

A new novel about long-distance open-ocean swimming/Irish goatherds/physics & I’m trying to raise my first-born son, Ford. Not in that order.

Whiskey or yoga?

This is real easy. Bourbon (none of that Scotch shite — tastes like burnt sod). Maker’s Mark is my usual, Woodford Reserve is a splurge, but in a pinch Jack Daniels (technically not bourbon) will do.

Matt’s official site is

Please drop us a line if you have a piece of news and would like to be featured in a future installment of the Fictionaut Five.

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