We much appreciate up and coming rock star lit mag Cobalt conducting an interview with TBWCYL, Inc. spokesperson Ben Tanzer. We now want to share it with you. And even excerpt. Which we've done. Feels good. For us anyway.
COBALT: Many readers comment on your ability to draw from hotspots around Chicago – the social environments that people who live in or have visited the city can identify with. How does your hometown feed you as a writer?
Tanzer: Great question, and I should note that as a native New Yorker, I should probably refer to Chicago as my adopted hometown in case anyone takes offense. And yes, I’m talking to you, Joe Meno and Billy Lombardo. No really I am talking to you guys. Let’s get some coffee some time. That said, I am fed as all writers are fed. We are always absorbing what is around us, where we go, what we see, and smell and touch and as we write and the stories come together these experiences trickle-in, sometimes consciously and sometimes not, and then when we edit we ask ourselves about the places we are contemplating and the locations we’ve identified and whether they have the meaning we want to imbue them with or some other place might better capture it. And so it’s always shifting and always driven by what is and has been ingested, and for me, especially lately, it is Chicago, where I live now and have been living, and the stories that I’m writing about seem to belong here, just as some of the older stories I have written seemed to belong somewhere else.