Lisa Moore on the Inspiration for Caught [guest post]

Lisa Moore

Lisa Moore is the bestselling author of the novels February, longlisted for the Man Booker Prize, and Alligator, a finalist for the Scotiabank Giller Prize. Her third novel, Caught, is launching this month. Watch for her posts throughout June, right here, Inside the House.

The idea for Caught grew out of a lore about ’70s drug culture in Newfoundland that I’d heard all my life, stories about pot-smuggling that were tinged with a kind of awe at the sheer audacity and drive of the young men involved. Part gossip, part fact, part tall-tale or dream, these stories were full of mythic quest, innocence and innocence lost. Bravado.

I was also enamored with the idea of loosely following the adventures of Homer’s Ulysses, so there are modern day sirens and shipwrecks, sea monsters and even a Cyclops. I was interested in the notion of adventure — the idea of setting out of the high seas, of being unafraid. Or overcoming mountains of fear, just for the fun of it, for the experience, for treasures of one sort or another.

The older I get the more conservative this country seems to become. The ’70s, in retrospect, seem like much wilder, unfettered times. I wanted my hero to embody that kind of gusto, the sort of mythic zeal of youth; I wanted him to be bursting with ardour.

I was coming-of-age in the ’70s myself, younger than the characters of this novel, but just old enough to be able to perceive a glimmer of the errant excitement. The ’70s will probably always seem like a moment of transformation to me.

And now, in the era of children’s play dates, and surveillance cameras in every corner and crevice, from high school hallways to Google Earth, the growth of the prison industry, economic collapse, the cutting to tatters of the social safety net — considering all of that — it seems wildness has been draining out of the world at a dizzying rate, just as if somebody pulled a plug in a big bathtub.

The boys in my novel are driven by a radical impulse to just plain go for it.

Cover of Lisa Moore's CaughtIf you’ll be in Toronto on June 19th, join us at 6pm for the launch of Caught at Ben McNally Books.
Find out more on Facebook.

Watch for more guest posts from Lisa throughout the month of June.

3 thoughts on “Lisa Moore on the Inspiration for Caught [guest post]

  1. Reblogged this on made with love and commented:
    Lisa Moore is one of my favourite writers and I am really looking forward to her new book, Caught. I’ve reblogged her post from House of Anansi’s blog where she shares what inspired her to write it.

  2. Sounds great. But please tell me that the cover image accompanying the post isn’t the actual cover. That is hideous, and doesn’t suit the contents of the book at all.

    • I’m somewhat with you on this, given the male protagonist. People seem split on it (see April 2). But it’s also enticing in a way, I want to read the book sooner to see how the female figure ties in to the story. First I have to read February though!

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