Describe your latest book.
My new book, Woke Up Lonely, is about a cult leader, his ex-wife, and the four people he takes hostage. It's about loneliness in America. North Korea. A city underneath the city of Cincinnati. Cloud seeding. Espionage. Eavesdropping. It's also, you know, a big-old love story. Does that describe it adequately? Probably not. How about: The novel takes place over a four-day Waco-style siege. It follows six people on their paths toward or away from estrangement. I'm told it's droll and maybe a little wild, though it doesn't seem so wild to me.
What's the strangest or most interesting job you've ever had?
I once sold knock-off perfumes in parking lots all over Los Angeles. I'd seen an ad in the paper. I showed up for an interview, which consisted of myself and 40 other people jammed into a room and shown wads of money that could be ours if we just broke the law a few hours a day. We were told not to worry if we got arrested, that the company would bail us out. We were given a script that was ...