Scott and I finally met shortly after I moved to Oxford, Mississippi. Oxford was a midway point between his home in St. Louis and New Orleans where his daughter attended college. He drove down a few times to visit her, always stopping in Oxford overnight. As people age, it becomes harder to make new friends. This is particularly true for men, especially men who aren’t sports fans, fishermen, or work-buddies. The spontaneity of youth is subsumed by work and family life. Writers by nature are reclusive, which deepens the difficulty of befriending people. When we do venture into the world, we sometimes learn that the prolonged solitude necessary to writing has eroded our social skills.
None of this was the case with Scott. We hit if off immediately. He is funny, erudite in a number of fields, and a charismatic raconteur. He is also a good listener, fully engaged in a conversation. We’re about the same age and loved the same writers. We both were old-school enough to use 35mm cameras for our love of photography. We’d each lived Paris during as young men, and later we both toiled in the glittering cesspool of Hollywood. Over beers, we traded many stories of winters in the midwest, the reckless antics of our youth in France, and idiotic producers in L.A. And books, always books and art. Mainly we laughed.
his website you will see the world they inhabit.
Scott’s daughter transferred to another school and I don’t see him as often. He is more prone to leaving the house than I am so I’m hoping he turns up in Oxford on book tour. I am eagerly waiting to read That Left Turn at Albuqeruque, a novel that takes its title from Bugs Bunny, my all-time favorite cartoon character. Scott Phillips is one of my very few favorite living Americna writers. When his new book comes out I will drop everything and read it. Then read it again. I’ve done that with all his books.
your favorite local bookstore through Indie Bound or from
Subterranean Books (they'll have signed editions)
Barnes & Noble
Keep up with him at his website.