The Great Big Beautiful Podcast, Episode 168: Lev Grossman
(Photo credit: Evans Vestal Ward)
Today, we’re talking magic. Lev Grossman is the author of – among other things – The Magicians trilogy, which recently made the jump to the small screen with The Magicians on Syfy (Seasons 1-2 on Netflix and Season 3 on the air now)! In a nutshell, The Magicians imagines what someplace like Hogwarts might be like if it were a real place in the real world and filled with hormonal teens. Intrigued? You know you are.
On the show, we reference a blog post Lev wrote about experimenting with format and trying to write something new. I highly recommend reading it if you want some insight into his creative process. Sometimes you need to start something big in order to know it won’t work. That way, you can abandon an idea you know is going nowhere. If you don’t even push yourself to fail, then you end up with regret over an idea that MIGHT have been good. This is always important to hear, but even more so when it comes from someone who’s an established success in his or her chosen field.
On this episode, we talk to Lev about his struggle to find his voice as a writer, the laborious process he had to go through to turn out his first couple books (which took a combined 11 years to write), the commercial and critical success he’s found with The Magicians, and the pressure to move forward and produce something new and different. We also hear what kind of candy he’d be, which is a good answer even though he trashes one of my favorite candy bars in the process. (Sorry Mounds, you’ll always be #1 to me.)