Imagination, it turns out, is a great deal like reporting in your own head. Here is a paradox of fiction-writing. You are crafting something from nothing, which means, in one sense, that none of it is true. Yet in the writing, and perhaps in the reading, some of a character's actions or lines are truer than others.
I think in the wake of 9/11, like a lot of Americans, you know, we were all very traumatized by the attacks, traumatized in a totally different way by some of what happened afterward in response. And I think there have been these questions hovering in the past decade of, what kind of country are we? Who are we?