The Book of Jonah by Joshua Max Feldman has just come out. It’s the story of a young Manhattan lawyer who is visited by a series of strange visions that throw his life into turmoil. Sounds like a hilarious, Mel Brooks-y update on the Bible, right? Except the visions are showing him that New York City is about to be reduced to rubble and ash.
If you were Jonah, you’d run too.
We asked the author one question.
How are you celebrating the publication of The Book of Jonah?
Joshua Max Feldman: One of the great challenges of writing is that most often there’s no reliable way to know how you’re doing. There’s no box score to check, no stock price to follow, there’s no boss to hand down reprimands or praise. Typically, it’s just you and the writing: your mind and the words on the screen. It’s up to you, the writer, to decide whether the work of the last hour, day, month has represented progress or a wrong turn. Sometimes you’re sure; a lot of the time, you’re not. This is the real reason writers hate the question, “How’s the writing going?” Frequently, you just don’t know.
There is, however, one day you can be sure your efforts haven’t been in vain–when the trust you’ve put in your muse is indisputably rewarded: publication day. Holding your book in your hands–or, okay, holding a Kindle with your name on the screen–is as much proof as you can ask that you did at least a few things right. So I’m celebrating the publication of The Book of Jonah with pride in the work I did and gratitude I can share it with readers. The mountains writers climb may be all in their heads, but I’m happy to have reached the top of mine.
– Brian Hurley