Trillium Book Awards Author Reading 2015

The Proust Questionnaire, with Jeff Latosik

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March 1, 2011 - Jeff Latosik is Open Book's March 2011 Writer in Residence. In his answer to the Proust Questionnaire, Jeff tells us his greatest extravagance, his current state of mind and more.

The Proust Questionnaire was not invented by Marcel Proust, but it was a much loved game by the French author and many of his contemporaries. The idea behind the questionnaire is that the answers are supposed to reveal the respondent's "true" nature.


What is your dream of happiness?
Being surrounded by musical instruments.

What is your idea of misery?
Being surrounded by front men.

Where would you like to live?
Where I live. Parkdale.

What is your chief characteristic?
I am loyal.

What is your principal fault?
I am indecisive.

What is your greatest extravagance?
The number of fall/winter jackets I own. Seven.

What faults in others are you most tolerant of?
Social ineptitude is a fault I am fond of.

What do you value most about your friends?
That they see it more clearly than I.
What characteristic do you dislike most in others?

What characteristic do you dislike most in yourself?
I care too much about what others think.

What is your favourite virtue?

What is your favourite occupation?
Film director.

What would you like to be?
A musician.

What is your favourite colour?
Light blue. “It’s a boy.” That colour.

What is your favourite flower?
Maybe this doesn’t count but Venus fly trap.

What is your favourite bird?
Sky rat.

What character in history do you most dislike?
Gandhi. Just kidding.

Who are your favourite prose authors?
Dostoevsky, Salinger, Golding, Foster Wallace, Hage

Who are your favourite poets?
Wallace Stevens, Robert Frost, Elizabeth Bishop, Don Paterson

Who are your heroes in real life?
Paul Quarington is a hero of mine.

Who is your favourite painter?
Rene Magrite.

Who is your favourite musician?
Somebody I really admire is Jim O’Rourke.

What is your favourite food?
Sang gyup sal, a Korean dish consisting of pork, greenery and sauce.

What is your favourite drink?
Jever. A beer from Germany.

What is it you most dislike?

What natural talent would you most like to possess?
A singing voice.

How do you want to die?
Licked to death by wild dogs.

What is your current state of mind?

What do you consider your greatest accomplishment?
Would it be arrogant to say this survey? Actually, finishing a year of grad school in the humanities (I did English). If you’ve done it, you know what I mean. If you haven’t, congratulations, you’ve made good life decisions.

What is your motto?
I can improve.


Check back for more Proust Questionnaires with Canada's literati on Open Book.

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