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About Ned Vizzini


  1. Why did you begin writing?

    Well, if you dont count my 2nd grade opus The Poor Old Wizard, I started writing at 15 when I got my first story published in New York Press.

  2. Who do you see as the audience for your book?

    When I wrote the stories, I was writing them for New York hipsters (with curses), but when I compiled them for Teen Angst? Naaah I got off my high horse and shaped them for the audience they really wanted: teenagers (no curses). I was a teenager when I wrote them and we all write for ourselves to some degree, so that was a natural and necessary transition. Now Im really happy that I did it because one bit of praise from a 13-year-old is worth about 15 snarky hipster handshakes. Of course, adults (hipster or not) are welcome to rock along with Teen Angst if they choose to. I guarantee itll take them about four hours to read.

  3. How do you manage your time between school, writing and playing in your band?

    It is surprising to a lot of people that I go to college for computer science and play bass in a band called the NEW MEXIKANS that gigs regularly at CBGB. I guess I like having my brain stretched in various ways. Computer science, which everyone thinks is irredeemably nerdy and artless, is actually a lot like writing, just for a computer. All of the same principles of tightness and editing remain. (I also have managed to cram some computer science into my next book.) Playing music is something that just makes me instantly happy every time I do it, so why should I stop? I manage my time with a datebook, an ever-present list of things to do and many a meal on the subway.

  4. Teen Angst might now be turned into a TV series. How will you feel having your stories acted on national television?

    I have viewed my family as part-sitcom since I was about seven years old, so I think its only right that they get some screen time. The stories in the book are short and funny and full of slapstick so theyre tailor-made for TV treatment. Im excited, obviously. I really want to do Seinfeld with teenagerssomething smart and funny and fast and character-driven.

  5. Being a teen author you have been grouped with such young writers as Amelia Atwater-Rhodes, Jay Liebowitz and Nick McDonell. How do you feel that your work differs from that of your peers?

    First of all, its a great thing that so many generation Y kids are writing because we sure have a karmic debt to make up (Britney Spears, The Strokes, Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, etc.). My writing differs from the bold-face names above because it isnt in-your-face bold-face; those people write about demons and murderI write about the challenges posed by sliding doors in Mini-Mart beer fridges. They write about drugsI write about snot. I had an adolescence that was twisted and funny, but also oddly typical. Thats why my stories connect so easily with the nerds, the artists, the jocks, the adults, all the types. Also, it cant be overlooked that Teen Angst? Naaah is really really well-writtenlike, better than David Sedaris and David Eggers books. I think.

  6. What are you working on now?

The highest-grossing movie of all time. No, seriously (Michael Crichton said that about Jurassic Park), its bizarre fiction set in high school and when you read it youll wonder why you didnt think of it.

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