Interview with David Kummer, Author of Everything, Somewhere

25 May 2021

What can you tell us about your new release, Everything, Somewhere?

This novel tackles a lot of heavy themes and focuses on the small river town where I grew up. It’s a life-affirming message and hopeful in tone, but there are certainly dark sections of the novel. I tried to replicate the realistic struggles of teenagers coming of age in this current day, but especially I wanted to touch on topics like home and growing up, as well as relationships.

What or who inspired you to become an author?

I wrote horror novels for a while, which required a different inspiration in some ways, but recently I’ve been motivated a lot by albums that I like and settings that I see. It’s also enjoyable to tackle big themes and heavy topics, whatever is closest to my heart at the time, and I think writing this book really convinced me that this genre is something I enjoy working in.

What’s on your top 5 list for the best books you’ve ever read?

For this book specifically, I was really inspired by Where the Crawdads Sing. That novel is fantastic, for anyone who hasn’t read it. I also think John Green’s influence is visible in the book, as well as books like Shotgun Lovesongs and Empire Falls, both books that were revolutionary reads for me. Those novels dealing with small towns and the complications around them are always enjoyable to me when well-written.

Say you’re the host of a literary talk show. Who would be your first guest? What would you want to ask?

If I could host a literary talk show, I’d probably not go for very many episodes, but I’d get the handful of authors I really, really love and hear from them. Sarah Waters is one that I respect a lot, as well as those mentioned above. I would want to hear about their writing process and especially the stories surrounding their first “major” book, since it’s always cool to hear those transitions from struggling author to big-time.

What’s your favorite thing about writing?

I love the way that you can approach abstract subjects in writing, really any theme, and you can talk about it in creative ways. Writing with hidden meanings or tying in themes throughout a novel is one of the most enjoyable, as is getting to know the characters. I like to think that each of my characters is memorable in some way, and if not then something memorable will happen to them.

What is a typical day like for you?

Depending on the season, I’m either doing schoolwork or at my job for the majority of the day. I do a lot of writing in the evenings and late nights, but I’m thinking about novels and ideas pretty much throughout the whole day.

What scene from Everything, Somewhere was your favorite to write?

There’s a scene in there which takes place at a McDonald’s, and I made that choice on purpose because what’s better for such an emotional scene. Playing around with irony in that way, having an important scene in a non-important place, was great fun, but the scene itself is one I’m proud of and definitely gave me a lot of joy to write.

Do you have a motto, quote, or philosophy you live by?

I don’t have it boiled down to any one motto, but thinking from other people’s POV is important to me, as well as cherishing relationships and loved ones while they’re still close.

David Kummer is the author of the new book Everything, Somewhere

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