Good People
Bellevue Literary Press
Robert Lopez
“Anytime, Sweet”
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“Anytime, Sweet,” is from Robert Lopez’s collection GOOD PEOPLE (Bellevue Literary Press, 2016).   Lopez is the author of two novels, Part of the World and Kamby Bolongo Mean River, and an earlier story collection, Asunder.   His fiction has appeared in the American Reader, BOMB, Brooklyn Rail, Hobart, Indiana Review, Literarian, and elsewhere.  He lives in Brooklyn.

 

Catherine Lacey in her Bookslut interview with Lopez asked: Do you see any patterns within your writing or characters?

 

Lopez replied:  I do. Somehow the same concerns keep coming up. Most of the characters seem to be confused, unsure of how it is they are supposed to live. This reminds me of the wonderful epigraph to Grace Paley’s Collected Stories, which itself is one of my favorite pieces of writing. Ms. Paley relays a story about her friend and colleague in the “writing and mother trade.” She asks Grace a few days before she dies, “The real question is, how are we to live our lives?” The narrators and characters always seem to be entirely baffled by their circumstances. They find themselves put upon and disconnected. They usually cannot account for what has happened to them, let alone how to address the problem(s). Another concern is language and how inadequate it can be. I never consciously set out to write about these issues, but these issues keep coming up.

 

Praise for Robert Lopez:

 

“Robert Lopez is the master of deadpan dread, of the elliptical koan, of the sudden turn of language that reveals life to be so wonderfully absurd. Always with Lopez, the voice is all his—enchanting, surprising, at times devastating.” — Jess Walter, author of Beautiful Ruins

 

“Robert Lopez’s strange, incantatory, visionary stories reveal the mysteries behind the ordinary world. You lift your head from this book and it’s as if a third eye has been opened.” — Dan Chaon, author of Await Your Reply and Stay Awake

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