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Q&A: Katrina Onstad



onstad_katrina.jpgTo celebrate this year's Scotiabank Giller Prize longlist, we asked each longlisted author a series of questions to help us gain insight into their work and their thoughts on the craft of writing. Here is Katrina Onstad, author of Everybody Has Everything.

Q: What inspired you to write Everybody Has Everything?

A: As soon as you have kids, there's a low level hum of tragedy, an anticipation that something bad will happen. I ran off from there, allowing the worst to happen.

Q: What would you say is at the core of your book?

A: Good people searching for wholeness.

Q: If your book was being made into a movie, which actors could you envision taking on the main characters?

A: Why, Naomi Watts and Mark Ruffalo, of course. Can you ask them?

Q: Which Scotiabank Giller-longlisted book (other than your own!) would you most like to see take home the prize?


A: Ha. Not falling for that one.

everybody_has_everything.jpgQ: Where is the absolute best place for you to write?

A: On a farm in northern France, perhaps Brittany -- not that I've ever experienced that. Otherwise, my home office in downtown Toronto is pretty nice.

Q: Is there a specific subject matter, event or location close to your heart that'd you love to write about in the future?

A: I could tell you, but then I'd have to kill you.

Q: What book has moved or affected you most in the past year?

A: Re-reading the short stories of Ann Beattie was incredibly emotional. Also, This Beautiful Life by Helen Schulman slayed me.

Q: What is one insight into the craft of writing or the writing life that you wish you'd known much earlier?

A: That it's all about keeping your butt in the chair.  

Read more longlisted author Q&As



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