Author Dan Chaon talks Ray Bradbury, Modest Mouse & writing from outside the fishbowl

When he was 13, Dan Chaon—the author of bestseller Ill Will and National Book Award finalist Among the Missing—corresponded with Ray Bradbury. (Yes, that Ray Bradbury.)

When Chaon visited in May, he shared with us two pieces of writing advice that Bradbury gave him, which he now shares with his students at Oberlin.

In the span of our interview, Chaon also:

  • recommends two new authors whom he loves. (Check out Chanelle Benz and Ottessa Moshfegh.)
  • shares what music influenced Ill Will. (Opening theme, Modest Mouse; closing credits, Doris Day.)
  • explains why writing for television is even more frustrating than writing a novel.
  • divulges why so many of his stories feature a disfigured character.
  • and talks about how his working-class childhood and present success allow him to feel out of place anywhere.

For more author interviews, visit our YouTube page.

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