Economic Poison

After the publication of The Whore's Child and Other Stories, Richard Russo was often asked why he had turned to short stories after the success of Empire Falls (which had won the Pulitzer Prize in 2002). His explanation? He hadn't.

Most of the stories were a decade old. Moreover, "Poison" was so old that Russo had had to change the dollar value of a house on Martha's Vineyard before publication. The change? "A decimal point."

[Following the publication of Mohawk (Russo's first book, which was rejected some 20 times before finding a publisher), Russo 'lived for a long time in a waking dream,' thrilled by the notion that he could walk into a bookstore in another town and find a copy of his book -- until he tried to do so...]

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