"Canada" by Richard Ford

Jeff Glor talks to Pulitzer Prize winner Richard Ford about his latest novel, "Canada."

Jeff Glor: What inspired you to write the book?

Richard Ford: What originally "inspired" me, I suppose, was a notion of a teenage boy being abandoned by his parents (I didn't know why they'd abandon him; I had to make that up), and being transported across the border from the US into Saskatchewan, Canada, where he knew no one. It seemed dramatic -- which is generally what I'm looking for. I was also interested in borders, themselves; emotional ones, moral ones, psychic ones, as well as national ones, and what happens when you cross them.

JG: What surprised you the most during the writing process?

RF: What surprised (and pleased me) most was how much I enjoyed describing a man robbing a bank. I may have always wanted to rob a bank myself. Thoreau says a writer is often not the man who has the experience, as much as the one who needs to have it. I guess I needed that.

JG: What would you be doing if you weren't a writer?

RF: I hope I'd be being a cartoonist, and playing the blues harmonica on the weekends.

JG: What else are you reading right now?

RF: I'm reading William Boyd's first novel, "A Good Man in Africa," which is terrific.

JG: What's next for you?

RF: The interesting thing about being a writer is that you simply don't know what;s next. It's why I'm not a lawyer. On the other hand, I'm 68, so I have some idea.


Author Richard Ford talks about the border between childhood and young adulthood, as well as the U.S.-Canadian border. His new novel is called "Canada."
Author Richard Ford talks about how the landscape and language of Saskatchewan influenced his writing in his new novel, "Canada."

For more on "Canada" visit the Harper Collins website.