Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Edward Hardy's "Keeper and Kid"

Edward Hardy's short stories have appeared in over twenty different magazines including: Ploughshares, GQ, Epoch, The New England Review, Witness, Prairie Schooner, Ascent, Boulevard, Yankee and The Quarterly, and his short fiction has been listed in The Best American Short Stories. Geyser Life, his first novel, enjoyed wide acclaim.

Here he proposes a number of actors--and one favorite director--for a cinematic adaptation of his novel Keeper and Kid:
For certain writers I know the instant they start thinking of a character, some actor will kindly pop up on the imaginary horizon and help fill in the outline. For me it rarely works that way and with my most recent book, Keeper and Kid, it certainly didn’t. The novel is the story of Jimmy Keeper, who is blissfully living in Providence with his girlfriend Leah and running an antiques store/salvage yard empire with his best friend Tim, when Keeper’s ex-wife dies and he suddenly inherits Leo, his three year-old son. And the whole time I was writing no actors’ faces ever materialized, even when I could have used some help.

But something else did happen. Lately a lot of productions have been filmed in Providence, or at least it seems that way because Providence isn’t all that big and those gleaming production trailers are hard to miss. All of Brotherhood has been filmed here, 27 Dresses, Underdog, Little Children, there’s a list. And as you’re driving around town now it almost feels semi-normal to find a street you planned to park on blocked off with huge white trucks, cables running down the sidewalks and lights hanging from big red cranes. So for me, driving by on the way to work, the fantasy always went like this: What if they were filming my book? And I already know the locations! They wouldn’t even need to hire a scout!

Therefore, let’s say this all came to pass and beyond the question of where - who would play who? For Keeper: John Cusack or Mark Ruffalo? For Leah: Minnie Driver or Rachel Griffiths? For Tim: Patrick Wilson or Jake Gyllenhaal? Ah, to have such dilemmas. But for a director I’d want Richard Linklater. He’d just let the characters all talk and talk and talk. It’d be great.
Read an excerpt from Keeper and Kid, and learn more about the author and his work at Edward Hardy's website.

The Page 69 Test: Keeper and Kid.

--Marshal Zeringue