SIXTY

Vonnegut in The Paris Review.

“INTERVIEWER
Not many writers talk about the mechanics of stories.

VONNEGUT
I am such a barbarous technocrat that I believe they can be tinkered with like Model T Fords.

INTERVIEWER
To what end?

VONNEGUT
To give the reader pleasure.

INTERVIEWER
Will you ever write a love story, do you think?

VONNEGUT
Maybe. I lead a loving life. I really do. Even when I’m leading that loving life, though, and it’s going so well, I sometimes find myself thinking, “My goodness, couldn’t we talk about something else for just a little while?” You know what’s really funny?

INTERVIEWER
No.

VONNEGUT
My books are being thrown out of school libraries all over the country—because they’re supposedly obscene. I’ve seen letters to small-town newspapers that put Slaughterhouse Five in the same class with Deep Throat and Hustler magazine. How could anybody masturbate to Slaughterhouse Five?”