Interview with Nick Orsini, author of Fingerless Gloves

Publisher: Apostrophe Books

Publish Date: October 1, 2012

Order From:  Amazon US / Amazon UK / iBookstore USA / iBookstore UK / Kobo USA / Kobo UK

Synopsis: Tonight will be the most difficult night in 25-year-old Anton Duchamp’s life.

When his best friend James Squire is mysteriously rushed to hospital, Anton begins a night-long journey that takes him from shady, marijuana-smoke-filled apartments to ex-girlfriends’ bedrooms, and eventually back to his childhood home.

As the night unfolds, so do new revelations about Anton’s recreational drug use and his past failures. And as Friday night drags into Saturday morning, he learns of James’s deteriorating health. In a universe that has seemingly left him without a specific function, it takes a single night for Anton to realize that no one will ever hand him a meaning or a purpose.

Fingerless Gloves by Nick Orsini, which won the Fiction Fast-Track prize for new writing, is a story about best friends and the mistakes we never knew we were making. It is a story about remembering – by any means necessary.

Author Interview: Q. How did you come up with the idea for your novel(s)?  

I was living in my first apartment since moving out of my parents' house and I distinctly remember feeling like I was a pretend adult. I had adult things and paid adult bills, but it felt like some sort of strange performance that I was putting on. I couldn’t stop thinking that other people must feel the same way. I started writing Fingerless Gloves [] based on that feeling …and Anton really is the embodiment of that odd time in everyone’s life.

Q. Is there a message in your novel(s) that you want readers to grasp?  

The message is about best friends, and how much that term changes over the course of years. It’s about love and habits and things we need to learn to let go. Anton is weirdly attached to his hometown. He knows the geography, the people, everything … and he looks at change as this thing that could shift the very ground he’s standing on. James embraces change, and that’s the difference between the two. My books are all about realizing how much bigger the world is than you.

Q. If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything about the book?  

Sentences here and there, maybe some organizational things … but I’m generally ecstatic about the way it turned out!

Q. What was the hardest part of writing your novel(s)?  

The hardest part is the last day you write the rough draft. All these characters and plot points, some that work and some that don’t, are all out of your brain and on the page … and then it’s time to start killing your bad ideas through editorial. That’s always rough.

Q. Did you learn anything from writing your novel(s) and what was it?  

I learned that love is absolutely everywhere. I wrote in a Starbucks while a couple fought and got back together over the course of hours. I can remember writing Fingerless Gloves while my family went through losses and gains, while my friends were hired and fired, while I was brokenhearted and lighthearted. I wrote in the mall while all this stuff happened around me. Noise-cancelling headphones can only keep so much out. Biggest lesson: stories are everywhere, telling themselves every moment.

Q. Did you have a musical playlist you listen to when writing? If so, what kind of music?  

I generally don’t. If a new album comes out and I want to listen to it, I throw it on to see what it does for my process. Right now, typing this up, I’m listening to Please Remain Calm by a band called Hostage Calm.

Q. Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?  

I did extensive research on Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner in college. I spent months with the film, the different cuts, etc. I analyzed someone else’s story, and I had this moment, during my final exam period when I just told myself “Tell your own story, kid.”

Q. Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?  

Hunter S. Thompson. He is immediate and timeless. His pontifications on politics are still relevant today. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas feels both epic and sprawling, but also intimate … and he wrote it with such brevity. He was mindful of every single word and never wasted one. It’s really amazing.

Q. Tell us your latest news.  

Latest news: I’m working on my third novel and it’s top secret, but it has roots in my nerdy upbringing. It’s about comic books and misfits and superheroes we make. 

Q. Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?  

Dearest readers, I wrote Fingerless Gloves with each and every one of you in mind. I hope you see something in Anton, James and Beth (or even Streets) that reminds you of yourself … I hope you can say “I remember feeling that way!” or “how awkward!” … despite what you might read, it is not a sad story. There are sad elements to it, but it’s a story about all the moments between extremes of happiness and sadness, and how we learn to live there. 


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