Tomorn Sookprecha writes, translates and edits books on subjects ranging from love and death to cafe culture and the forgotten decibels of everyday sound. The editor-in-chief of GM magazine, Tomorn also has nearly 30 books on his resume, mostly non-fiction and translations, and he's known to his readers for the ability to pick out the mundane and the overlooked, shaking them, and turning them into thoughtful and romantic reflections.
Among his many translated works, perhaps he's best known for his Thai rendition of Haruki Murakami's books, notably South Of The Border, West Of The Sun, which is perhaps the most popular novel of the Japanese writer among Thai readers.
Tomorn's latest release is his translation of An Edible History Of Humanity, an analysis of food and civilisation written by Tom Standage. Meanwhile, Tomorn has also written a book of essays, Wara Sood Tai (The Last Moments), which ponders on the final thoughts of people facing the spectre of death. And two years ago, he released a book titled Karn Dern Tang Rawang Hoo (A Journey Of The Ears), about the nature and dimension of noise and sound.
It seems every little thing interests him, and we're sure there's still more he'll put his thought, and his pen, upon.
_ Kong Rithdee
What are you reading?
A few things at once. The Sense Of An Ending by Julian Barnes, the translated version of The Pirates In The Age Of Sail, a non-fiction by Robert J. Antony, translated by Prasith Tangmahasathitkul, and Seeing Through Maps: Many Ways To See The World, by Ward Kaiser, Bob Abramms and Denis Wood, translated by Orawan Koohajaroen.
What is the book you've always wanted to read but haven't?
Quite a few. For starters, Thomas Pynchon's Mason & Dixon and David Abulafia's The Great Sea: A Human History Of The Mediterranean. I haven't read them because they're big books and I need to find time to read the whole things through.
What was the last book that made you laugh?
Laugh because it's funny: David Sedaris' books such as Me Talk Pretty One Day and Holiday On Ice. Laugh because it's not so funny: Some of the articles by [Thai social commentator] Mukhom Wongtes.
What was the last book that made you cry?
They weren't the last books that made me cry, but that make me cry every time I re-read them. Oscar Wilde's fairy tales such as The Happy Prince, The Selfish Giant and others.
Did you ever buy a book because everybody was talking about it, but when you read it you didn't like it at all?
Yes. But I'd better not name them here.
Roughly, at home how many books have you bought that you haven't started reading?
Ah, uncountable. Over 100 I guess.
You translated a few books by Haruki Murakami. Which book of his is your favourite?
Pinball, 1973. It's the middle book in Murakami's "Trilogy of the Rat" [the other two are Hear The Wind Sing and The Wild Sheep Chase]. I read it a long time ago and I can't remember exactly why I liked it so much, but I remember feeling that it was a full-flavoured Murakami. I have to admit that I haven't read all of his books, especially the big one _ IQ84.