I had a great conversation with Joseph G. Anthony, about his new novel and what motivates him as a writer! You can hear the whole interview below. To learn more about, Wanted: A Good Family, check out Tom Eblen’s Herald-Leader article!
Joseph G. Anthony, a Jersey-born Kentucky author, moved in 1980 from what he considered the center of the country–Manhattan’s Upper West Side–to Hazard, Kentucky, a place so isolated and obscure that he at first felt as lost as a missing person. But it was, he discovered, its own country. In fiction he began to explore its beauty, its many problems, its strengths and its weaknesses. “Fiction feels and understands: racism is in your face, poverty on your back. News stories can only report.”
Anthony, an English professor for 35 years, is a hybrid-Kentuckian now. His accent might still be North Eastern, but he sees with an insider-outsider’s eye. He regularly contributes essays and poems to local periodicals and anthologies, including a poem and story in Kentucky’s Twelve Days of Christmas. He’s a Kentucky Colonel (someone sent his name in) but he’s more Kentucky peasant. He lives with his wife of 36 years, Elise Mandel, in Lexington, Kentucky. She’s become a hybrid Kentuckian, too. Their three grown children are Kentucky-raised.
His previous books include 2 novels—Peril, Kentucky, and Pickering’s Mountain plus 2 short story collections, Camden Blues, and Bluegrass Funeral.