Aard­varks and an­i­mal cook­ies

Kapi-Mana News - - FRONT PAGE -

Porirua’s Rudy Lopez’ new book is a com­ing of age story set in the early 1960s.

Ti­tled, Open Your Eyes, Jack­son Ry­der, it’s a story set in The United States.

Jack­son Ry­der shares a pas­sion for art with his mother, who dies un­ex­pect­edly. He tries to forge a new re­la­tion­ship with his dis­tant father who, he be­lieves, hates art.

The Kennedy as­sas­si­na­tion, the emer­gence of the Bea­tles and the Viet­nam war frame Jack­son’s story.

Kapi-Mana News asked the au­thor about his book, who he’d in­vite to din­ner and what his su­per power would be.

How long did it take you to write?

Five years from in­cep­tion to pub­li­ca­tion.

I was work­ing full­time while I wrote it and I was also a full time cre­ative writ­ing stu­dent.

Was it your first book?

No. I wrote a novel called The Song of Laugh­ing Bird about a girl grow­ing up in Siberia 25,000 years ago that was pub­lished in 2005. That book took ten years to write.

Did you al­ways want to write?

No. I was trained as an artist - a painter - and spent most of my work­ing life as a se­condary and ter­tiary art teacher.

It wasn’t un­til I was forty years old that I be­gan to write se­ri­ously. It was then that I re­alised that I had fi­nally found my muse.

How do you re­lax?

I’m a de­voted be­liever in re­lax­ation. I would like to think that I re­lax all the time. I love to read, learn, write, walk, have a wine and a yarn with good friends and, some­times, I paint.

Where can we find you in the week­ends?

Do­ing the same thing I do dur­ing the week.

What’s one thing peo­ple may be sur­prised to find out about you?

I suf­fer from dys­lexia.

If you could in­vite three peo­ple to din­ner - liv­ing or dead - who would they be and why?

I would in­vite God…in her three man­i­fes­ta­tions.

We could talk on any sub­ject from aard­varks to zoo an­i­mal cook­ies, in any lan­guage, and all be on the same page.

I would also love to ask those sticky ques­tions ( like why Trump?) and get a straight an­swer.

Favourite place in Porirua?

Pataka Mu­seum, hands down. I never come out of there with­out feel­ing en­riched and more hu­man. It is a real jewel in our com­mu­nity.

If you could have one su­per power what would it be? Why?

It would be to know when I was be­ing an ass, be­cause I think it is the most elu­sive power of all.

What scares you?

Trump.

What was your high­light of 2016?

Get­ting ex­cel­lent re­views for my book, when my friend of forty­seven years, came to visit from San Diego and ev­ery fam­ily gath­er­ing.

What does New Zealand need to con­cen­trate on in 2017?

Erad­i­cate child poverty, raise the min­i­mum wage to a liv­ing wage, be cre­ative, eq­ui­table, dou­ble our in­take of refugees, laugh, be good to each other, re­duce screen time, buy more books.

PHOTO: SUP­PLIED

Porirua au­thor Rudy Lopez.

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