Monday, December 14, 2009
Dan Wakefield, author and screenwriter
Dan Wakefield has written the novels, "Going All the Way," and "Starting Over." Both of those books were made into major motion pictures. Now, he writes books on spirituality. "How Do We Know When It's God?" is his spiritual memoir. This link is his website.
Dan lives in Florida, so I sent him a list of questions for this interview and today he replied in an E-mail.
Q: Many baby boomers who grew up all over the country during the 50s are fascinated with that time period and have a general feeling of nostalgia for all things connected to those years. Do you think all children are sentimental about the years during which they grew up, or was there something special about the 50s?
A: I don't think all people are sentimental about their youth- especially those who grew up as Jews during WWII, as well as all children whose homes were bombed or (those who had) parents or family members killed in wartime- and probably many who grew up in our Depression of the '30s. The '50s was a time of peace, except for Korea and there were no new wars when Ike was president (1952-1960.)
Q: What year did you leave Boston? And please speak a little about your decision to move to Florida and about your present life there.
A: I left Boston in 1992, lived back in NYC until I went to Florida in 1994- for the reason I was offered a good position as Writer in Residence at Florida International University.
Q: You have said you believe in "putting aside the 'numbing' distractions of television and music." Do you watch any television or go to the movies... and are there any recent television shows or films you have seen that you enjoyed?
A: I go to movies and I think "Mad Men" is the best thing I've ever seen on TV and the only accurate description of the '50s on TV or film. I also watch "The Good Wife" and "Glee."
Q: Do you think there has been a general "dumbing down" of American culture in the past few decades?
Q: Helen Weaver, in "The Awakener," suggests that today's Village may be just a facade and that the real Village may still be there underneath... just like it used to be. Do you think time creates a sort of pentimenti that drives imaginations to dream of time travel?
A: Helen Weaver said that in my book, "New York in the Fifties." "The Awakener" is a terrific book and a great remembrance of Kerouac and the era!
Q: If you believe in reincarnation, do you think it is possible to be reborn into the past?
A: I don't believe or disbelieve in reincarnation. I am open to anything, but I just don't know. I'd like to come back as Babe Ruth.
Thanks, Dan Wakefield!
Here is more on Dan, a writer from Indianapolis, Indiana.
Dan Wakefield has approved the use of the above photo at this blog.