Tuesday, March 6, 2018

"The Ghost Notebooks"

Ben Dolnick is the author of four novels: Zoology, You Know Who You Are, At the Bottom of Everything, and The Ghost Notebooks. His writing has appeared in the New York Times, GQ, and on NPR. He lives in Brooklyn, NY.

Dolnick applied the Page 69 Test to The Ghost Notebooks and reported the following:
Page 69 of The Ghost Notebooks is actually a bit unusual. The book is told in the first-person -- a continuous narrative by a man who goes through some painful and scary stuff -- but throughout there's a lot of interstitial material: scraps of other peoples' diary entries, newspaper articles, Q&A's. So page 69 is one of those interstitials -- specifically, it's an excerpt from a book by the mysterious and possibly insane old writer in whose house the novel takes place.

All while I was writing my novel I envisioned it as something like a physical notebook in which someone had handwritten his story -- and I imagined that this notebook, like my notebooks, would be stuffed with all sorts of scraps and lists and handouts. So that's how this unusual shape came to be, and I hope that a reader doing the page 69 test would be sufficiently intrigued to flip directly back to page 1.
Visit Ben Dolnick's website.

The Page 69 Test: Zoology.

The Page 69 Test: You Know Who You Are.

The Page 69 Test: At the Bottom of Everything.

Writers Read: Ben Dolnick.

--Marshal Zeringue