Nothing forbidden – The Village Voice

David Duchovny is part of America’s cultural zeitgeist, due to his iconic roles as FBI agent Fox Mulder, in The X filesand Hank Moody, in California† But what he says has consumed his soul is writing; the cerebral actor is a prolific novelist and has written four books since he was 55: Miss SubwaysReally like lightningHoly Cow: A Contemporary Milk Storyand Bucky F*cking dent

“I thought it was time for me to tell the stories from my heart,” he tells the vote in an interview. Raised around Greenwich Village and the Lower East Side in the 1960s and 1970s, the town has been a muse to Duchovny – three of his four books are set there. “New York inspires me, but I don’t know if I like it. But it’s in me. I grew up there. All ghosts are there. All places, smells and sounds are encoded by memory. And even though things have changed there, I still keep moments…. So I can’t resist writing about it. I don’t necessarily want to. It just depends on the story.”

He continues: “As a young New Yorker, everything was right in front of me. It was like a petri dish of humanity; there was nothing forbidden or shocking or wrong. It was just a nice neighborhood to grow up in, because everything was more or less equal. At least that’s how it seemed to me. My consciousness formed on the street – it was so wild and full of every kind of person of every denomination, sexual orientation, race, creed, everything. That should open up a person to be non-judgmental about the world. I loved it.”

It was recently announced that Du-chov-ny will write, direct and star in the film Bucky F*cking dentbased on his 2016 novel about New York in the 1970s, a gripping father-son baseball story that tops New York Times bestseller list. “I played baseball as soon as I could walk,” notes Duchovny. “My father was a softball pitcher on semi-professional teams in New York City. I was a fan of the Yankees when they were bad – late ’60s to early ’70s. I was in Princeton for maybe a few weeks when Bucky hit the home run. I didn’t know about his nickname until I spent time at the Cape.”

Coming out now is a new, pandemic-inspired, rear window-like thriller, the reservoir† “I wanted to write a story about a former Wall Street man quarantined at his home. Ridley wants to understand the chaos of the world and confront the meaninglessness of existence. And that kind of lures him into a delusional relationship with a woman in Central Park. This man wants to be indispensable again, as he was as a young father. He looked at the feeling of being needed or feeling special. And it led him to these delusions, and then his fever took him all over.

As a boy, Duchovny grew up a few blocks from the iconic Strand bookstore and didn’t go to Central Park much as a child. “It was a journey to get there. But when I moved back to New York about 12 years ago, I fell in love with the park’s reservoir and was inspired to write this novella in my apartment.” Read in one direction, the book contains lyrics from Duchovny’s three studio albums, plus several new poems, including one written from Ridley’s perspective. Viewed in reverse, it’s a full-color flip-book of one of the time-lapse videos he shot while writing the novella. “David’s literary prowess and playfulness are fully expressed in this novella,” said Johnny Temple of Akashic Books, the publisher of Duchovny. “I love the echoes of Breakfast at TiffanyIt’s because I’ve lived in New York City since 1990 and always wonder, what’s behind all those apartment doors? The reservoir itself contains both mystery and history, almost coming alive in its urban cosmology.

Duchovny is equally passionate about his poems. ‘Writing poems about an absence – about writing about things that cannot be written about. So that’s what makes them magical. And I think because I started seeing myself as a poet when I was 15 years old, it affected my prose style. I am definitely giving myself over to a poetic type of fiction writing.” He adds: “I’m glad I started writing poems. I’m glad my first relationship with fiction writing was this economic, almost magical form of what a poem is.”

I’m aging like a tree, every new ring a job
shield
around an empty marrow: the things I did
don’t learn
locked in the center of my being,
unreachable,
only of interest to those who would chop
me down to see
What I might deliver cold from someone else
time.”

— Excerpt from “Dead Seven”, by David Duchovny, from Poems, lyrics, Flip

Duchovny will read from the reservoir on June 11 at Barnes & Noble, 33 East 17th Street, in Union Square, in NYC.

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