Sally Rooney on Being Seen by Others

Your story in this week’s issue, “Color and Light,” follows Aidan, a young man who works at a seaside hotel, as he meets Pauline, a sophisticated woman who is mostly a mystery to him. How were you thinking about the excitement of the unfamiliar, or of the absence of information, when you were working on …

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Yiyun Li on the Distance Necessary for Stories

Your story “All Will Be Well” takes place, in part, in a hairdressing salon. What kind of encounters does a space like that allow for? There is a story by I. B. Singer, “The Cafeteria,” which I teach often. It’s set partially in a cafeteria in New York, where Yiddish-speaking refugees gather after the war. I’ve …

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