A wonderful, wide-ranging (the Moomin books, Jack London, and on and on) essay by Matthew Battles about what being feral means. I'll filch only an aside for here, and encourage you to read the whole thing: "(A few years ago I was looking at one of Caldecott’s books in the company of Maurice Sendak; we were examining the concluding illustration in a tale about a little boy lost in the woods, a towhead fetally curled in a clearing while animals regard him beneficently from amidst the trees. The forest creatures came to wish him a good night’s sleep, the caption read. “Yes,” muttered Sendak. “Or perhaps they were ready for dinner.” Part of what makes Sendak one of our great artists of the feral is his ability to hold sentiment and nutriment in equal regard.)" See also: Maurice Sendak interviewed at NPR.
The NYT talks to André Leon Talley: "The downside of being around all this nature is that twice I have had a bat fly into my bedroom, having slipped in through the cracks of the screened window. I do not wish this experience on anyone. Nothing is more unpleasant than running screaming down the stairs, lying awake until dawn on the sofa, waiting for pest control to show up, only to hear, “Oh, it could be in your blanket or sheets, or behind a mirror.” (Once, a bat was found snoozing in the bathtub.)"
The brilliant Elizabeth Knox talks about why she writes fantasy (and has some perceptive things to say about Ms. Holly Black's Curse Workers trilogy, too): "But if I’m asked the question ‘Why do your books have to have angels and vampires etc…’ when I’m in a happy and expansive mood, I might just point out that, for human beings, the real world is made of facts, and stories. The world is how it is, and it’s how it feels; and how it feels is as interesting as how it is. Then, for myself, I’ll say I write fantasy because 1) I love writing fantasy, and because 2) Fantasy gives me freedom." (Also, huge and loud YAY to another Southland book; if you haven't read the Dreamhunter Duet, well, DO. And all her books, really. They're all wonderful. I just especially want more people in YA to read the Dreamhunter books. Oh, and there's a great new story set in the same world in Kelly and Gavin's Steampunk! anthology, which'll be out soonsoonsoon.)