Illuminating Ordinary Life

We read for many reasons and different kinds of pleasures. One of those pleasures is recognition—of a moment, a place, a feeling state. It’s the writer’s job to find language for those moments, those feeling states, that allows the reader to access their own feelings, that makes them think, “Oh, I never thought of it that way before. I could never find the words or the language for that.” Illuminating ordinary life, to me, is one of the most beautiful ways to write and to read. —Dani Shapiro, in conversation with Suleika Jaouad