from Frank @ the Artshouston blog:
How (and when) did your collaboration with Kent begin?
There was a lot of time standing around, and it quickly became clear that we had much in common. Both of our fathers were ministers: Kent’s Methodist, mine Presbyterian. We had similar tastes in literature, politics and humor and oddest of all, we were dressed almost identically – down to the same boots.
Kent sent Duke a writing sample and I sent photos – we drew up a proposal and got to work. And we decided to proceed whether or not we got the award. So I shipped him up work that I had done recently on the Llano Estacado of Texas (Kent lives in Salida, Colorado). And Kent sent me small bits of writing, pieces that were evocative of the Plains - the place, its history, human relations, weather, current issues, overheard remarks — wonderful and multidimensional bits of writing that often were very visual.
I read a review of the book that says: “West of Last Chance is a book for people who are in on the secret of the Great Plains.” What’s the secret?
There is a wonderful secret. And one of the reasons I wanted to publish this book and my earlier book On the Plains, was to share that secret. It is a resonant place. The mantra for West of Last Chance is the following;
“You have to know how to look at this country. You have to slow down.
It isn’t pretty, but it’s beautiful.”
There is a quiet beauty, a scale of space that exists nowhere else, a set of colors and a quality of light that I have come to love and a subtlety that merges with grand space in a way that for me is intoxicating. I love being out there. I love those struggling, tenacious little towns. I’ve come to have great respect and affection for the people I’ve come to know – and it’s a nice thing to share.
Them kids'll be out offering a reading at Harris Gallery this Tuesday (2/19) from 5-7 pm
and then also at Brazos Bookstore on Thursday (2/21), 7 pm