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Though he's held jobs from movie theater doorman to janitor to screenwriter, George Hagen seems to have successfully landed as a novelist. With his debut, The Laments, he delivers a poignant portrait of a unique "Everyfamily" that's both touching and tragic, but most of all, rings true for readers.
Good To Know
In our interview, Hagen shared some fun and fascinating anecdotes with us:
"I started out of college struggling to finish the film I directed at NYU. I needed several thousand dollars to complete the film, so I worked two shifts at two different law firms as a text editor. I spent about six months working 16-hour days in order to raise the money. Though the film won prizes in festivals, the experience of being in debt for more money than I had ever seen in my life made writing seem more appealing than filmmaking. All I needed was a typewriter and paper."
"My book started with an episode that had really happened to me as a baby just after I was born. I was a surrogate baby for another mother in the ward whose child was in an incubator. So every day I would spend some time with her, and some time with my mother."
"I've had many jobs: movie theater doorman, carpenter, selling newspapers outside the Midtown Tunnel, picking up the guard dog's droppings at a lumberyard, baling hay on a farm, janitor, executive secretary, screenwriter, and stay-at-home dad."
"Likes: Lucian Freud paintings, Matt Davies cartoons, Jack White's guitar riffs, pinhole photography, steak frites and homemade cappuccino."
"Dislikes: Almost anything on television -- an infernal device that masquerades sarcasm as humor, cruelty as entertainment, and fame as happiness. It has also shortened the American memory to about a week."