Interview: Kenny Leck

I share my store with two cats —my stress balls. They have no interest in books.
If I controlled Singapore I’d order archaeological digs throughout the entire island.
Right now I’m reading Ayn Rand’s The Fountainhead, Pico Iyer’s The Open Road, Steve Jobs’ biography, and Murakami’s 1Q84.
I would rather have an ice-pick stuck in my eye than read Tiziano Terzani’s A Fortune-Teller Told Me again.
Three cups of black coffee a day, at least, makes me happy.
My own home is nothing like my store. It’s spartan—a cupboard, a TV, a desk—that’s it.
I love taxi uncles’ wealth of useful and useless knowledge.
The worst part about running a bookstore is being surrounded by books all day, every day, but not getting the chance to read as often as I’d like.
Running a small business is punishing; I’m there seven days a week from 10am to 9pm. My last holiday was six years ago!
If I could get away I’d go somewhere with a lot of bookstores—serious!
The most embarassing moment of my life was when I was 14. I couldn’t cycle to save my life on an outing to Pulau Ubin.
For the record, I can cycle very well these days.
The books that changed my life were Edgar Allan Poe, Selected Poems and Tales and Dead Poets Society by N.H.Kleinbaum. Reading them encouraged me that my command of English wasn’t that bad.
Most of my classmates failed English.
Bookstores can actually intimidate some people.
It might sound inconsistent, but I love digital books. They encourage non-readers to read and, perhaps, to step into a bookstore.
I write fiction, but suck at it. A novel, though. Hopefully. One day.
Wherever I go in life books will go with me.

BooksActually is located at 9 Yong Siak Street.