Books & Authors Interviews

Ruth Ozeki on Catastrophe, Thought Experiments and Writing

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On the eve of her 2013 Man Booker Prize shortlisting (for A Tale for the Time Being), Canadian-American author (and Zen Buddhist priest) Ruth Ozeki visited the Wheeler Centre’s green room for a conversation about her work and ideas with Melburnian and fellow author Leanne Hall. Ozeki begins by explaining her process of auditioning characters for A Tale for the Time Being, describing how — midway through the work — the incidence of the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami forced her to reconsider the book, responding more directly to a changed Japan by ‘breaking the fictional container’. She also discusses thought experiments in her writing, which she sometimes constructs as performed philosophy, and reflects on why the relationship between a writer and a reader is ‘about the most magical thing [she’s] ever experienced’. Ruth Ozeki was a guest of the Melbourne Writers Festival in August 2013.


REad more about Ruth on HāfuWiki.

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