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Sketchbook by Timothy O'Donnell

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Dave Eggers / McSweeney’s

San Francisco

In April 2005, in New Orleans, author Dave Eggers was interviewed onstage by Anne Gisleson at the Tennessee Williams Festival. Eggers talked about his firsthand experiences with the Patriot Act and the perils of one’s private sketchbook falling into the government’s hands. The following is a slightly edited transcript of that interview.

[IN 2004] I HAD BEEN GRANTED a press pass to the Republican National Convention in New York City. I was sitting there, and I was trying to take notes and I couldn’t because I realized I didn’t have my notebook with me. And at that moment I realized that I had left it on a plane. It was just a plain black notebook. I called the airline from the convention and I said, “Have ...

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