Purity of Heart
A Haven Kimmel fan site
PHOTO: Yellow butterfly and pink azaleas
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News | FAQ
  • 2006-03-15: There is an interview with Haven in the March/April issue of The Rambler magazine.

  • 2006-01-19: In the news: Haven's media blitz for Couch includes interviews on WUNC and in The Independent Weekly, as well as the Jan. 9 issue of People magazine.

  • 2005-12-12: The hardcover edition of Haven's new memoir She Got Up Off the Couch is now available! There is an excerpt here.

  • 2005-10-06: At long last, the audio edition of Zippy is now available, read by the author! You can listen to an excerpt here.

  • 2005-07-10: The publisher's page for the Dutch translation of Something Rising is available here.

  • 2005-07-01: The official Haven Kimmel site was renovated this week!

  • 2005-05-01: Haven's second memoir, She Got Up Off the Couch, is scheduled for release by Free Press in December 2005.

  • 2005-03-31: Mini-tour for Something Rising -- Haven will be touring in April in support of the trade paperback edition of SR(LS). Stops include Boston, Cincinnati, Dayton, St Louis, Blytheville AR, and Oxford MS. See the Simon Says page for details.

  • 2005-03-19: The Harper Perennial trade paperback edition of Something Rising is scheduled for release in September 2005. The cover is at right; click for larger view.

  • 2005-01-08: The Free Press trade paperback edition of Something Rising is scheduled for release in April. The cover is at right; click for larger view.

  • 2004-12-13: Zippy was featured today on NPR as an antidote to Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). Zippy makes everyone happy, even cats.

  • 2004-07-27: I posted a version of the Purity of Heart biography of Haven on Wikipedia, the free online encyclopedia.

  • 2004-05-28: The French translation of The Solace of Leaving Early was released today under the title Indiana Blues. See the Bibliography for details.

  • 2004-05-10: The UK trade paperback edition of Something Rising (Light and Swift) was released today.

  • 2004-03-03: The Something Rising tour has ended. Haven will probably next be touring in support of The Used World in 2005 and the paperback release of Something Rising in spring 2005.

  • Orville won a 2003 Blue Ribbon award from The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books.

  • Haven's first novel, The Solace of Leaving Early, was recently optioned by Mike Nichols and Icarus Productions to be made into a film.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Are you Haven Kimmel?
No. Haven has called me her biggest fan, but I'm actually just her tallest fan.

Where can I write to Haven?
Haven Kimmel
c/o Broadway Books Publicity
1745 Broadway
New York, NY 10019

Will you forward something to Haven for me?

What is Haven's next book, and when can I get it?
The third book in the Hopwood triptych, The Used World (ISBN 0007174144), is scheduled for release in 2006 by Fourth Estate.

Where does the title The Used World come from?
From a store called 'Hazel Hunnicutt's Used World Emporium', of course.

Why is this site called 'Purity of Heart'?
Many of the themes in Haven's writings deal with solitude and the search by individuals for truth and beauty and the nature of spirituality, all of which are addressed in Soren Kierkegaard's
Purity of Heart is to Will One Thing. Haven has mentioned this work explicitly in Q&A sessions as being influential to her. In fact, one of her poems bears that title. If you've read Solace, you know that in it Langston tries to read Kierkegaard's book.

Where does Haven get her ideas?
She has a big box full of them that she found at a yard sale one day. That's my guess.

Did all those things in Zippy really happen? And are the characters in Haven's novels based on real people?
Haven has said, "My experience is that when one writes a memoir, no one believes it's all true. Then you write a novel and everyone believes it's autobiographical. So nothing is ever nonfiction and nothing is ever fiction. Audiences are difficult that way." I hope that clears it up.

Why does Haven describe herself as a 'failed poet'?
I think this depends upon what definition of 'poet' you are using. If 'poet' means someone who writes in free verse about writers writing about writers' block, or about how difficult life is when you're working on a poetry MFA but you're forced to mop the floors at Waffle House because our fascist American culture doesn't value your 'work', then that's probably true. But if a 'poet' is someone whose writing can make you simultaneously gasp, laugh, and cry in the same sentence, then Haven Kimmel is definitely a successful poet.

How do you pronounce 'Buena', the name of Cassie's grandmother in Something Rising?
It's 'byoon-ah', not 'bwain-ah'.

Why don't you have more personal information about Haven on the site?
This is a personal preference. I'm a relatively private person, so I only put on the web site the level of personal detail that I'd be comfortable with having about myself. I don't believe that just because some people happen to be 'famous', this entitles us to know everything about them. That being said, I will answer the following question:

Who are Haven's boyfriends?
Elvis, Jesus, and John Donne. Only one of them is actually dead. Can you guess which one?

Why don't you have book reviews listed in your bibliography?
Again, this is a personal preference. Most reviews aren't worth the time it takes to read them, and when I do read them, I frequently wonder whether I have read the same book the reviewer has (or hasn't, which is often another problem). For the most part, I ignore them and spend my time reading actual books.

Your bibliography lacks certain attributes that would make it academically acceptable. [this 'question' was edited for content, style, and length]
This is one of the dangers of having librarians as acquaintances.... Consider the idea that building a fan site is a little different from a creating a catalog entry or writing an academic bibliography. One of these activities is 'fun'. I suspect that we would disagree about which one.

Can I link to your site?
Sure; I'd prefer that you link to the front page:


Or, you can use this banner image:

[PHOTO: Purity of Heart banner]

Copy the image, and then insert the following code into your web page where you wish the banner to appear:
<a href="http://www.purityofheart.org">
<img src="hkbanner.gif" border=0>

Or, you can use this tile:

[PHOTO: Purity of Heart tile]

<a href="http://www.purityofheart.org">
<img src="PoH-tile-172x125.jpg" border=0>

(By the way, thanks to the Wildflowers of Central Virginia site at UVA for the Azalea w/butterfly image that appears on these pages.)

Send me more questions; I just love to answer them.


contact: [email protected]
© 2003-2017 W. John MacMullen
Haven Kimmel's official site is http://www.HavenKimmel.com/