Thursday, May 3, 2007

Marc Acito's "How I Paid for College"

Marc Acito's debut novel, How I Paid for College: A Novel of Sex, Theft, Friendship and Musical Theater, won the Ken Kesey Award for Fiction, was selected an Editors' Choice by the New York Times, and is in development at Columbia Pictures.

Acito applied the "Page 99 Test" to the novel and reported the following:
What mysterious, mystical force is at work here? Page 99 begins my single favorite scene in my book, the one of which I'm proudest, and which politeness demands I not discuss in explicit detail. Here's a hint — in a book with a subtitle "A Novel of Sex, Theft, Friendship and Musical Theater," which kind of scene do you suppose it is? Suffice it to say it's a scene about a character who can't talk when his mouth is full.

In a culture saturated with sexual imagery, sex is still a subject we rarely discuss honestly. And it makes me apoplectic that we live in a country where the unrestrained violence of the Super Bowl is deemed acceptable while Janet Jackson's nipple during the half-time show can bring down the wrath of the FCC. Hell, I'm still angry that Congress impeached Bill Clinton because he lied about a nooner with an intern.

So I'm committed to writing as frankly about sex as I can. And with laughs. 'Cuz face it, nothing's funnier than getting caught with your pants down. So while Page 99 may only represent 25% of what How I Paid for College is about, it's the one page you'll hear me read out loud any chance I get.
Visit Marc Acito's website and read an excerpt from How I Paid for College.

Acito is an irregular contributor to All Things Considered, the New York Times, and Live Wire Radio.

--Marshal Zeringue