Tin House // Interview with Brian Evenson
Here’s a link for my interview with Brian Evenson for Tin House.
“The Sladen Suit” and “The Absent Eye” and a number of other stories here certainly do traffic in horror. Every era of course gets the monsters it deserves. Frankenstein’s creation was as reflective of the Industrial Revolution as Godzilla was of the Atomic Age. Ridley Scott’s acid-blooded alien seems to presage the AIDS epidemic and The Human Centipede speaks to our current fears about our food-supply chain. What do you suppose is frightening us right now in 2012?
The two stories you mention both deal in some way or another with the idea of permeability or leakage between worlds, and I think that’s a fear that runs through the collection as a whole, and is probably tied to a more generalized fear about the nature of reality that is very much tied to our age as a whole (with us becoming more and more conscious of all the ways that reality approaches us in only mediated forms, and struggling as well with the degree to which our notion of reality is manipulated). “The Sladen Suit” is about a kind of impossible passage from one world to another, or maybe to the same world, very hard to say. “The Absent Eye” is a kind of alternate history of the soul that suggests that a spiritual world is just as confused and mortal as our own, with lives living parasitically connected but parallel. A lot of the stories in Windeye explore notions of reality and perception, and I think that’s an almost central obsession to life these days.