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This Week in Fiction: Colum McCann

The story of John Alcock and Arthur Whitten Brown’s 1919 journey across the Atlantic in a converted Vickers Vimy bomber—the first nonstop transatlantic flight—is a true one. What made you decide to use it as fictional material in this week’s story, “Transatlantic”? Oh, Lord, there are so many ways to answer this question. The quick, brutal version is that I began a novel a while ago, for which I was interested in the transatlantic journeys of two great Americans, Frederick Douglass, in 1845, and Senator George Mitchell in the nineteen-nineties.
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