T. M. Wolf is the author of Sound, which will be published by Faber & Faber in April. He is twenty-nine, grew up on the New Jersey Shore, and he has written for a variety of music publications, particularly on hip-hop. He recently graduated from Yale Law School. You can follow him on Twitter @tom_tm_wolf.
You have a tremendous academic record and this is something of a departure from your studies. How and why did you come to write this novel?
When I was in the early stages of writing Sound (2005 to 2008), I was bouncing around a lot, basically moving from one school and one academic program to the next. I was working very hard trying to “find” something (I’m still not quite sure what) and learning a lot, but I still felt like I was missing something (again, I’m not sure exactly what). At the time—and I still think this is true—fiction seemed like a more versatile, and maybe more productive, way to explore ideas that my academic work kept kicking up but that academic methods didn’t seem flexible enough to address. These were all questions of experience, I guess: what it feels like to be human, how our minds work, how we relate to other people, what it’s like to be answer-oriented in a world that’s chaotic and doesn’t yield answers all that readily. (more…)