Happy Birthday, Nelson George, born 1 September 1957
- I’m not a bad boy – I’m a writer.
- It’s difficult in nonfiction to make the internal connections as opposed to the external connections. The writing style comes out of creating characters who are sort of projections of me, in a way, but may not be as connected to his emotional life as he is to the external world. So I just project that out, and try to put in a certain intelligence as well as blind spots, because they give the humility and the humanity.
- In nonfiction, the voice is more all-knowing, pointing out connections for the reader, like, ‘You didn’t notice this.’ When you do fiction, I find it very liberating to be stupid at times. It’s a way to get at both the confusion of adulthood and the pleasures of adulthood.
- There’s a point where certain phrases are out of style, and it’s just ridiculous to use them, they become nostalgia.
- Every book I’ve ever written is written for the same person: it’s written for me when I was 21. I think, when I was like 21 or 22, I wanted to know shit. I wanted to know how the world worked, I had all these theories, and I was really trying to figure it out. I read every music book, every jazz book, every rock history book I could get my hands on. And I when I do readings, I run into that guy. The really musically, culturally interested young guy…
Nelson George is an African-American author, columnist, music and culture critic, journalist, and filmmaker. He has been nominated twice for the National Book Critics Circle Award. His works include the novels Urban Romance, Seduced, and One Woman Short.