Here's the deal: a few months back, before I got sick, I was profiled in Italian Vanity Fair. Yes, strange I know. "Michael," you might say, "I don't believe you've been featured in any publication like that in America." If you said that, you'd be right. The thing is, I have a strange and wonderful relationship with Italy. They seem to really like my work a lot there. And while my books have done just fine here in the states, it's different there for me. My work is popular enough there to justify a eight day/eight city book tour and an all-expenses paid trip to Festivalletturatura, an incredible annual literary festival in Mantua, Italy. When I was invited there last year, it ultimately resulted in this profile.
Since I've had some requests to see it, I thought I'd post it here. Okay, it was one request, but since I'm trying to reestablish this blog, I thought I might as well. After all, it's pretty damn cool.
Honestly, I don't really know what much it says. Obviously there's a lot in it about Detroit and how it features in my writing, as well as my penchant for old things. And of course, questions about the books. I also get busted for driving a foreign car. (I know, I know...) Despite that, an Italian friend told me that it was favorable, so I chose to believe him. I still haven't gotten a complete translation though. I suppose I could do it on Google Translate, but that would take forever, plus it would still come out sounding like the label of a can of Pickled Cuttlefish. I think I'm afraid to know. So if you speak Italian and realize that it says a lot of mean things, don't tell me. Let me quietly continue to live a lie. Anyway, here it is.
That shot was taken at the Heidelberg Project, a site familiar to many Detroiters. It's a pretty wondrous place, emblematic of a not uncommon Detroit aesthetic, art made from broken and discarded objects. If you want to know more, check out the Heidelberg website. It's amazing. Here's page two.
The book at the top is the Italian edition of my story collection, The Lost Tiki Palaces of Detroit. The photo is my study at home. It looks much bigger there. It's basically a closet of books with a desk at the end. Page three.
Yours truly on the couch where I was destined to spend much, much more time after my surgery. So that's it. I've written an essay on my whole crazy Italian experience. I'm hoping to get it published somewhere. If and when it happens, I'll be sure to link to it. Or, it could just end up on this blog...