BOOK PEOPLE IN THE TIME OF COVID
By Katie Dycus
Like many of you, words have built me and continue to sustain me during this time of isolation, instability, and even surprising joys. Books remain a vital way of bringing us together, even when the whole world lies in a state of suspended alienation, each of us within our own impermeable orbs. Books. They’ve the power to disrupt, organize, console. They take us out of the present moment and allow us to focus on things far removed from this world.
But art doesn’t just happen to us. It’s work. Books give us material with which to think: new registers, illusions, spaces. Even a chance to reflect upon our day-to-day life—what we do, when we eat, how we love. After that, it’s up to us.
I wanted to know how book people—especially those whose livelihoods depended on books—were coping, so I decided to ask. What follows are a set of mini-interviews with authors, booksellers, journalists, professors, poets, and literary translators. People who create the art that moves us both within and without states of alarm.
I asked each of them the same question: how has the written word carried you these past few weeks? Here’s what they had to say.
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