Lee Smith — Great Southern Storyteller
by Mary Laura Philpott

The prolific author speaks on growing up in the mountains, fiction’s role in society, and why biscuits are something worth celebrating.

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How often does it hit you just how many people have read your books?

It doesn’t, really. I live in a little town where if you throw a rock, you hit a writer, so it’s not a big deal. Hillsborough has always been kind of a leafy, dreamy town that’s a haven for writers and artists and outlaws.

What about when you travel?

Sometimes I sit down on a plane next to somebody who’s reading one of my books. The first thing I ask is if they like it. If they do, then I say who I am.

And if they don’t?

Then I don’t say a thing!

(This interview will be part of Garden & Gun’s 2019 book on Southern women. Read more of this piece on the G&G site here.)

(See more articles and essays here.)