Q&A with Dan Barden 

Dan Barden teaches cre

Dan Barden teaches creative writing at Butler University and is author of the book John Wayne, A Novel. Starting this week, his first play, Luke’s Father and the Sled, commissioned by Butler and directed by Diane Timmerman, will premiere at Butler. Luke is set in a multiplex cinema, where employees battle over whether movies are glorious — or corporate hallucinations. Barden also promises “a great big food fight.”
Q: What do you like about play writing — as opposed to fiction? A: Play writing is a blast. I love working with actors and directors and designers. They vibrate at a frequency that I really love. Fiction would be so much easier if you could get your characters to walk around and try out their lines. Q: I’ve heard that you write on a Palm Pilot, and that you have multiple works of fiction on that Palm Pilot. A: It is not true that I work on a Palm Pilot — although it’s true that I used to keep my novels inside one. It was a security blanket kind of thing. I wanted to know that all my work was close at all times. Q: What happens if someone tried to roll you for it? A: I’d say, “See if you can fix the ending of that second one. I haven’t had much luck.” Q: What are you reading? A: The X President by Philip Baruth. A novel by a writer who will be reading at Butler on Dec. 9. It’s about, among other things, a 109-year-old time traveling Bill Clinton. It’s shockingly good. It’s about Clinton’s legacy — both good and bad — against the backdrop of a world war caused by the cigarette companies. Q: What’s your drug of choice? A: Coffee. Which is why I can’t drink it. I embarrass myself. Q: How did you learn to be a fiction writer/novelist? A: I read a lot of books. I went to graduate school. But what really sealed the deal was a trick that I learned when I was an undergraduate poet. When I want to learn the deep structure of something I type it up. I’ve typed entire novels into my computer. When I’m writing, I like to have a good model at hand. So, I’m usually typing up a novel or a play or an essay while I’m writing one of my own. I worry sometimes that this means I’m insane. Q: Sometimes I see you walking your dog on Pennsylvania. Do you have one of those pooper-scoopers or that plastic sheath from the NY Times? A: Plastic sheath from the NY Times. Although you have to be careful. Sometimes they have holes in them. I don’t want to talk about that. Luke’s Father and the Sled runs Dec. 3-7; Butler Theatre box office: 940-9247.

Tags: ,

Around the Web


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

This Week's Flyers

About The Author

Jim Poyser

Jim Poyser

Jim Poyser is Executive Director of Earth Charter Indiana, a statewide organization that was one of over two dozen nonprofit partners in Greening the Statehouse. A former managing editor of NUVO, he won HEC’s Environmentalist of the Year Award in 2013.

Today's Best Bets | All of today's events

Around the Web

All contents copyright © 2016 NUVO Inc.
3951 N. Meridian St., Suite 200, Indianapolis, IN 46208
Website powered by Foundation