Jan Alexander

Location New York
Website http://www.janalexander.com

Books by Jan Alexander
  • by Jan Alexander
    Booklocker.com, 2002-04.

  • by Lottie Da, Jan Alexander
    Carroll & Graf Pub, 1991-02.
  • About Me

    I am a journalist by day, fiction writer by night (or whenever I have spare time). I live in New York City most of the time but have fueled much of my inspiration in forays outside of the city. Somewhat over a decade ago I sublet my Manhattan apartment and went to live in Hong Kong for several years (I also have an M.A. in international affairs with a concentration on Chinese studies). Now my escapes from New York are to a country house near Woodstock, where my husband and I relish the little things - watching the garden grow, deer-spotting, never having to search for a parking spot.

    Why do you write?

    Increasingly I'm finding that what fuels my creativity is stepping away from the computer and looking in unexpected places. I get ideas from raking my lawn upstate, a tidbit of local history that came from the guy who came to prune my trees, reading in the news that the Brooklyn-born woman who wrote "Leader of the Pack" just died. Ideas are quirky things, because fiction comes from slices of life. I'd say I write because my head would burst if I didn't. We live in an era that is so simultaneously terrible and wonderful (maybe the same could be said of any time and place) that I think I must write just to interpret the craziness of life for myself - and if I'm lucky for posterity.

    Any favorite authors? Books?

    Virginia Woolf, Henry James, Edith Wharton, Graham Greene, Albert Camus, poet Elizabeth Bishop. I'm a classicist in my tastes, and I don't read enough contemporary authors, largely a function of not enough time. However, I just reviewed Richard Price's new novel "Generosity: an Enhancement" and am in love with his prose. I like those who wrestle with verbal pyrotechnics - Price and Jonathan Franzen, for example. I like Lorrie Moore because she paints such vivid pictures of her characters, and Faye Weldon because she bites. Also loved "Atonement," a novel that haunted me as a reader and inspired me as a writer.

    Jan Alexander's Wall

    Geoffrey Fox – Sep 01, 2009

    Good answers to these "profile" questions. If I didn't already know you, I'd want to. I'll check out your stories -- we just got back to Madrid this morning, we're sort of pooped. I left the book for you (also with Jean-Marc's name) to pick up at the Silk Building, 14 E. 4th.

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