PW: How did you manage to write so beautifully about soldering pipe?
EF: My spouse and I bought our first house on graduate student stipends. It was an old house that had been pieced together with construction scraps and all the plumbing was copper. We were broke so a friend showed us how to do it, how to burnish the ends of pipe with emery cloth until they glinted like new pennies. The first day we worked on it, I just watched him fit the pieces together like he was building with Lego or some house-sized erector set. He was that enthralled with it. In “The Invisible Invisible Man,” I wanted to convey the simple joy of seeing things come together and the frustration when they didn’t.