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#BookEndsSpotlight- James McGowan

  1. If you could be any animal, what would you be and why?

Yep, definitely a chicken. No hesitation. I have a (slight) obsession after visiting Hawaii (where they have overrun the general population of Kauai) and they are majestic. I would have way too much fun.


2. Which of your five full albums (not just a song here and there) get the most repeat play?

Huh, well, this is difficult.

Off the bat- both of Chris Stapleton’s albums, “Traveller” and “From A Room: Volume 1”;

Beth and Moe did get me hooked on the Hamilton soundtrack, so that’s in here;

“Number 1’s: Stevie Wonder,” aaaaand,

Zac Brown Band’s “Jekyll and Hyde”


3. If you could sum up your life philosophy in under ten words, what would it be (and how did you get there?)

Probably:  “The only way out is through.”

Especially now, as I’m wrapping up grad school, it’s something I often mumble to remind myself that the only way to achieve my goals is to work for them, whether I want to or not.

(Admittedly, it’s also my line to myself for whenever I don’t want to do something that I have to do.)


4. What is your favorite reality tv show?

The Voice. Do not mess with my 8 o’clock Monday/Tuesday night time slot. I also think I nail the “This is The Voice” opening, though no one else does.


5. If you lead another life, not in publishing, what would you be doing instead?

This is contingent on whether or not my life outside of publishing gives me a tolerance for dead people’s organs, because I’ve always been fascinated by Medical Examiners. If not, then I would probably continue in academia, and aim to pursue teaching at the college level. It’s also a dream of mine to open a bookstore.


6. What would surprise us about you?

I’m strangely addicted to Seltzer, specifically lemon lime. I cannot go a day without it. Nor do I want to. I once gave it up for lent, and suffered for forty days straight.


7. If you could turn any activity into an Olympic sport, what would you have a good chance at winning a gold medal for?

I am inclined to say eating, because I’m always eating…. but to give a serious answer, it would definitely be the very useful *insert long sigh* skill of writing a Literature paper. MLA format, specifically. I’m told I should write them for money, but those who tell me that tend to forget about plagiarism.


8. If you could invite any three people (literary or not) to your dinner table, who would it be and what would you serve (food and drink)?

I don’t know if these people need to still have a pulse in order to count, but I’m making up my own rules.

1) Edgar Allan Poe- one of my favorite “classical?” writers. He’s a pioneer of the mystery genre, the sci-fi genre, a literary critic, and sort of a literary bad ass. I’d probably rudely ask how he died, too.

2) Barack Obama- because I love the world of politics, admire him, and want to know the secrets of the White House. I also have this goal to start a book drive, or something to start tackling literacy, or lack of books in the hands of children, and hey he’s got the reach for that. Sorry Pres, dinner and a sales pitch.

3) JK Rowling, because what self-respecting human would I be if I had the opportunity to have anyone over, and not ask JK Rowling? I think there would be some weirdly fascinating conversations with these three.

I’d serve chicken nuggets and French fries (because I’m a crazy picky eater, but hey it also keeps it casual, you know?). I’d also serve tea, because we’re in the presence of JK Rowling, and she deserves to feel at home.


9. If you could travel back in time to any single year or event then back again only once, what would you choose and why?

I’d go for the 80’s. Pre-cell phones, but with Nintendo, and all that music. Though I would miss twitter bit. Oh, and I’d probably bring someone who currently works at apple with me so we can become billionaires.

Category: BlogMcGowan



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