As “Immigrant Song” kicks off Led Zeppelin III, so does “What You Need,” the story, begin What You Need, the book.
— I made a mixtape for Little Fiction, choosing a song for each story in What You Need, and it filled me with a wish that all book promotion should be so fun
Drawn and Quarterly, Montreal
Raw Sugar Cafe, Ottawa
(Photos (top-to-bottom) by: Leigh Nash, me, Liette Bettez, and Justin Lam)
At long last, WHAT YOU NEED is officially published today. Rush on out to your local bookstore and bully them into stocking it. Order it online. Come see me at an event and we can conduct business hand-to-hand and face-to-face. Tell your friends. Read it aloud (but not to your children). Blog it. Rate it. All these things help.
I think hopelessness is a pervasive enough feeling among human beings—perhaps increasingly so, I’m not sure—but there’s certainly an extra element to it when you add isolation to the mix. Writing fiction about people in such circumstances is appealing because it can be a quieter space, a cleaner canvas on which to wreak your havoc.
— from a conversation with Trevor Corkum, conducted for Little Fiction. Read the rest of the interview right here.
Andrew Forbes’ stories are beacons scanning human experience for its loneliest, most secret corners, and illuminating them with hope. At turns funny, inventive, thoughtful and sad, What You Need is an unassuming, surprisingly moving first book of short fiction, striking for the poise and authority of its language and the depth of its insights.
— Pasha Malla, author of The Withdrawal Method and People Park
Events surrounding the launch of What You Need are lining up. So far dates in Toronto, Montreal, and Peterborough are confirmed. I’ll be reading at at least a couple of those with Andrew Hood, whose music book Jim Guthrie: Who Needs What is also being published by the tireless worker drones of Invisible Publishing. Watch the Events page for details, won’t you?
In Andrew Forbes’ collection of 17 stories, What You Need, old-fashioned values are sometimes gut-punched by modern life. With echoes of Raymond Carver, Richard Ford, and the grace of Flannery O’Connor, Forbes is the real deal short story writer. Forbes’ deft story telling and distinctive, intimate voice takes the reader into the hearts and souls of his introspective characters’ little triumphs and tragedies. Tough, tender, visceral lyricism is always balanced with an ironic warmth, humour, and just enough hope.
— Richard Taylor, author of House Inside the Waves: Domesticity, Art and the Surfing Life