Scott Kovach

a paperback writer in Ames, Iowa

Scott Kovach

a paperback writer in Ames, Iowa

Q: Who are you?

A: I’m a paperback writer.

Q: What does a paperback writer sound like?

A: You can’t hear the writer typing. He’s out on the deck of the Ark while Noah watches the Great Deluge.

Q: Where does the paperback writer compose his thoughts?

A: Anywhere he hears the rain; the deluge may not be interrupted: it is the Wrath of God.

Q: When does he do his writing?

A: When he can; When the day is clear and clean, and the sun is out, the writer laughs a good laugh and moves outdoors, bringing the rain with him for a while.

Q: Why do you think you can write?

A: I try not to think about it.

Q: How do you write?

A: I don’t bleed on the keys. Instead, I smile and let my fingers flow over the keys, soft and low, stuttering and stepping back (pages edited, deleted, pasted back into place, redacted, misattributed, dwarves losing heads to goblins, gods breathing life into subordinate clauses before smiting them (again) with impunity) and if (while parked illegally) a page makes it into a draft that someone more important than me finds clever—then (and only then) I thank the Good Lord for some lewd toast he made in an Irish pub while we were sitting at the bar, completely blitzed, where leaning towards me, he said: “I know you. You’re the Paperback Writer!” To which I said something. To which he laughed. And I decided to publish myself. And then I wake up. And write that down.