Philadelphia Weekly published today an interview bewteen prolific Philadelphia writers Solomon Jones and Karen Quinones Miller. Jones has a blog on NewsWorks called The Philadelphia Experiment.
The two are promoting new novels. Miller released on Oct. 2 An Angry-Ass Black Woman: A Novel Based on True Life—Her Life, and Jones’ The Dead Man’s Wife came out just last week.
The two have a lot in common.
An excerpt from the interview:
Karen Quinones Miller: You’re one of the more prolific writers I know in Philadelphia, Solomon, and I’ve always enjoyed your works — starting with your first novel, Pipe Dream, back in 2001. What made you start writing in the first place?
Solomon Jones: I’d gone through an addiction when I was in my early 20s. As a result, I’d lived on the street for a time, and I’d seen everything from prostitution to vicious assaults to gunplay. I’d lived in shelters and been to rehabs and slept in abandoned houses.
In the mid-’90s, when I was coming out of that, I started working as a doorman for a condominium while I was going to school at Temple University. There was a woman there named Susan Jacobs, who I met when she volunteered at the shelter where I was staying, and she gave me a Macintosh to do my homework. So I started using it. And about this time I was reading a book called The Gold Coast. It was written in chunks — in scenes — and I thought, “I can do that.” So I started writing my own novel. And I started by writing about what I really knew: the streets. Nine months later, I had Pipe Dream.