The Writer’s Block: An Interview with John Schoorl
The Writer’s Block is an ongoing video series of interviews with visiting writers at City of Asylum/Pittsburgh. In these Q&A’s, conducted on Sampsonia Way, writers sit down with us to discuss literature, their craft, and career. View all previous interviews here.
John Schoorl is a award-winning reporter and investigative journalist from the Dutch daily newspaper de Volkskrant. As a poet he made his debut in 2007 with A Capella and two years later he came with Uitloopgroef (‘Run-out-groove’): Poetry as a hidden track of his favorite songs. He also made an anthology of Dutch poetry about Elvis. He lives with his wife and three kids in a small village, just across a statue of Hansje Brinker, the boy who puts his finger in the dike.
On April 17th Schoorl talked with us on Sampsonia Way’s block. This street on Pittsburgh’s North Side is where City of Asylum/Pittsburgh has a row of houses for writers in exile, all of which are adorned with original artwork.
Schoorl appears in front of the Permutation House which features writing by Wole Soyinka.
Schoorl and other Dutch poets came to Pittsburgh by invitation of City of Asylum Pittsburgh. The event was presented in collaboration with the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust’s “Distinctively Dutch” festival, the Consulate General of the Netherlands, the Dutch Foundation for Literature, Kleine Revolutie Producties, and Lira.