Andrés Neuman: 2014 Puterbaugh Fellow
Andrés Neuman was born in 1977 in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and grew up in Spain. He has a degree in Spanish philology from the University of Granada. In 2010 he was selected as one of Granta’s Best of Young Spanish-Language Novelists, all of whom were under the age of thirty-five, and was elected to the Bogotá39 list, a 2007 collaborative project between the Hay Festival and the World Book Capital City of Bogotá to identify thirty-nine of the most promising Latin American writers under the age of thirty-nine.
Neuman’s published books include five novels: Bariloche, La vida en las ventanas, Una vez Argentina, El viajero del siglo, and Hablar solos. El viajero del siglo, translated into English as Traveler of the Century (2012), was chosen as the winner of the Alfaguara Prize and the National Critics Prize, two of Spain’s most prestigious literary awards. Talking to Ourselves, Neuman’s most recent novel to be translated into English, just came out in April. About Talking to Ourselves, Teju Cole has written: “At the heart of this braided tale is a profound grief, but at the heart of that grief is the ecstatic joy of living. We come to see how lives are built out of passing detail, the flicker of small incidents, the intervention of literature, and the trace of forgotten things. Talking to Ourselves is both brilliant and wise, and Andrés Neuman is destined to be one of the essential writers of our time.” And Diego Báez writes, “Talking to Ourselves solidifies Neuman’s place in the Spanish-language literary pantheon alongside César Aira, Roberto Bolaño, and Javier Marías.”
Neuman’s books of stories include El que espera, El último minuto, Alumbramiento, Hacerse el muerto, and El fin de la lectura. His verse collections include Métodos de la noche, El jugador de billar, El tobogán, La canción del antílope, Mística abajo, Gotas negras (a collection of haiku), and Sonetos del extraño. Década, an anthology of his poetry, was published in 2008, and Alguien al otro lado is a collection of his verse set to music. His most recent books of poetry include Patio de locos and No sé por qué, some of which have been translated for the current issue of WLT. Neuman is also a translator and influential blogger, has written books of travel essays and aphorisms, and served as the lead editor of Pequeñas Resistencias, a series of anthologies of the contemporary Spanish short story.
The Gardener I learned to plant trees with my grandfather.“The willows need more water than you, Andrés,and their rootsin the beginning aren’tvery deep.Sometimes they grow so fastand sometimes they...