Dan Kennedy on “American Spirit”

BOK_Kennedy_0528 (c) Maria Lilja HR

BOK_AmericanSpirit_0628

Dan Kennedy is known to legions of fans of “The Moth” as host of their weekly podcast, a medium where truth is held in high regard and fictionalizing is frowned upon. But after a 2008 memoir (“Rock On: An Office Power Ballad”) Kennedy is making his first foray into fiction. “American Spirit” follows the 40-something Matthew as his life slowly unravels. Kennedy says he could maybe relate to the character — but just maybe.

Why is the mid-life crisis so fascinating?
I suppose because it
really doesn’t matter who you are or what you do, when it occurs to you that you may, in the best-case scenario, be at the halfway done with your life, it tends to grab your attention. Having said that, I guess we never know what the halfway point is. History is full of people who didn’t realize they were middle aged at 14, you know? Have I started the interview on a positive note? Hey, where’s everybody going? Hello?

How was switching from nonfiction and essays to developing a novel?
I am a huge fan of true stories onstage. But I hit a point in writing where I just wasn’t fond of dragging friends and loved ones into print for the sake of a laugh and a few bucks to eat on. At a certain point you’re having a nice weekend with someone and something funny or weird happens and you can see them thinking: “Jesus, don’t tell me Shakespeare here is gonna throw me into his next little essay.”

Is 40-something Matthew based on anyone?
As for Matthew, he’s a guy who can’t figure out what to do when his job is gone, his marriage is doomed, the money’s running out fast again, he’s drinking in suburban grocery store parking lots, eating hallucinogens and decongestants, and then burning frequent flier miles flying around the world making a bigger mess of things for himself. … I’ve, uh, never known anyone like him.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Florida man charged with murdering son to play…

A Florida man annoyed that his 16-month-old crying son was preventing him from playing video games suffocated the toddler, police said on Friday.

International

Powerful 7.2 magnitude earthquake rattles Mexico

A powerful earthquake struck Mexico Friday, shaking buildings and sending people running into the street, although there were no reports of major damage.

News

OMG! Exercise can make skin (and butt) look…

A moderate exercise regime can turn back time and actually reverse the skin's aging process, according to new research. The study showed that a minimum…

International

Jews in eastern Ukraine ordered to register, Kerry…

Secretary of State John Kerry condemned reports that Jews in eastern Ukraine had been ordered to register with the authorities "or suffer the consequences."

Entertainment

Whoopi Goldberg makes her debut as marijuana columnist

"It helps my head stop hurting, and with glaucoma your eyes ache, and she takes the ache out. It's wonderful," she said.

The Word

Kate Middleton made fun of Prince William's bald…

Kate Middleton and Prince William are in Sydney, Australia, right now, and it sounds like that brash Aussie sense of humor might be rubbing off.

The Word

Is Tom Cruise dating Laura Prepon?

"Mission: Impossible" star Cruise is said to be dating Laura Prepon, star of "Orange is the New Black."

Television

'Scandal' recap: Season 3, Episode 18, 'The Price…

Sally is Jesus, Olivia caused global warming, and Mellie's still drunk. Let's recap the Scandal finale. A church full of Washington insiders is about to…

NBA

Deron Williams leads Nets over Raptors in Game…

The Nets traveled to a raucous Air Canada Centre but came out with an important Game 1 victory over the Raptors.

NBA

Carmelo Anthony agonizing over Knicks future as season…

There’s still the cloud hanging over the franchise’s head as to the pending free-agent status of All-Star forward Carmelo Anthony.

NFL

Jets host players with eye toward NFL Draft

The Jets hosted a number of NFL Draft hopefuls for workouts on Thursday, with an eye toward some under-the-radar players.

NFL

Chris Johnson: I wanted to go to 'a…

Now that Chris Johnson is a Jet, the team has to figure out if one of the most explosive players in the NFL over the last half decade has anything…

Tech

VIDEO: 'Vein-scanning' may become the future of paying

Designed to make transactions quicker and easier, the technology works by scanning the unique vein patterns in each person's palm.

Tech

#FollowFriday: 10 of the smartest Twitter accounts

Spending lots of time on Twitter? You might as well learn something. Here are some of the smartest accounts to follow.

Style

Light-up nail art syncs with phone

This Japanese technology syncs light-up nail art with your phone.

Wellbeing

Why is dance cardio taking off in NYC?

Instructors at some of the city's hottest classes explain why.