?> The Lit Show http://www.litshow.com Wednesdays at 2 PM CST Sat, 31 Oct 2015 23:12:37 +0000 en hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.3.2 The Lit Show is a weekly literary radio show based at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and broadcast on KRUI Radio in Iowa City. Founded in January 2010 by host Joe Fassler, The Lit Show features interviews with writers, readings and performance, reviews, and literary news. The program airs Wednesdays at 3 PM CST on KRUI Radio and litshow.com. There are many ways to listen to The Lit Show: by radio or web broadcast through KRUI, by podcast, and by visiting our archives. The Lit Show no The Lit Show joe.fassler@gmail.com joe.fassler@gmail.com (The Lit Show) Your home for literary interviews and performance. literature, writers' workshop, iowa city, poetry, fiction, lit show, lit, books, authors, interviews, podcast The Lit Show http://www.litshow.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/02/logo_335.jpg http://www.litshow.com fsfdssdf http://www.litshow.com/2015/10/31/fsfdssdf/ http://www.litshow.com/2015/10/31/fsfdssdf/#comments Sat, 31 Oct 2015 23:12:37 +0000 Joe Fassler http://www.litshow.com/?p=4298

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#101: Ryan Berg http://www.litshow.com/101/ryan-berg-interview http://www.litshow.com/101/ryan-berg-interview#comments Wed, 21 Oct 2015 14:06:03 +0000 Lucy Schiller http://www.litshow.com/?p=4272 Ryan Berg’s nonfiction work No House to Call My Home: Love, Family, and Other Transgressions is a breakthrough, a fierce, heartrending, and lyrical take on a wholly unreported topic. The preface jars and then situates the reader in the story with these statistics: 40 percent of homeless youth in New York City identify as LGBTQ, 70 percent of ...

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Ryan Berg cover: No House to Call My HomeRyan Berg’s nonfiction work No House to Call My Home: Love, Family, and Other Transgressions is a breakthrough, a fierce, heartrending, and lyrical take on a wholly unreported topic. The preface jars and then situates the reader in the story with these statistics: 40 percent of homeless youth in New York City identify as LGBTQ, 70 percent of LGBTQ youth in group homes reported violence based on LGBTQ status, 78 percent were removed or ran away from placement because of hostility to their LGBTQ status. There is a massive and systemic failure at work here, a failure to catch or support adolescents who come, often, from unspeakable trauma. Writes Berg, “The challenges I witnessed these youth confront would send most adults into a mental collapse.”

Informing No House to Call My Home is Berg’s work, first as a Residential Counselor, then a caseworker, at two New York group homes for LGBTQ youth. The stories here are multiple, and Berg’s own comes second, always, to those youth who he’s working to support. As Berg says, “this isn’t the story of a white man attempting to ‘save’ or speak for young queer people of color.” Instead, we have Bella, Benny, Montana, Rodrigo, Alexander, Barbara, Christina, Raheem, and Maite, whose tangles and traumas and hopes find voice on the page. And often, we get their stories nearly verbatim, even the most painful ones shining bright and unmistakable.

Threading through No House to Call My Home is the spirit of one of Berg’s epigraphs, a quote from Toni Morrison: “Home is an idea rather than a place. It’s where you feel safe. Where you’re among people who are kind to you and if you’re in trouble they’ll help you. It’s community.”

Ryan Berg is a Lambda Literary Foundation Emerging Writers Fellow. His work has appeared in Ploughshares, Local Knowledge and The Sun, and he has been awarded residencies from the MacDowell Colony and Yaddo. He now lives and works in Minneapolis.

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http://www.litshow.com/101/ryan-berg-interview/feed/ 0 Ryan Berg’s nonfiction work No House to Call My Home: Love, Family, and Other Transgressions is a breakthrough, a fierce, heartrending, and lyrical take on a wholly unreported topic. The preface jars and then situates the reader in the story with these... Ryan Berg discusses No House to Call My House: Love, Family, and Other Transgressions, his book about LGBTQ youth in New York City Homeless Shelters. The Lit Show no 24:43
#100: Celeste Ng http://www.litshow.com/100/celeste-ng-interview http://www.litshow.com/100/celeste-ng-interview#comments Mon, 28 Sep 2015 11:05:53 +0000 Lucy Schiller http://www.litshow.com/?p=4244 Celeste Ng’s debut novel Everything I Never Told You begins with a blunt statement of fact: “Lydia is dead. But they don’t know this yet.” From there, pasts focus and encroach upon the present, and the cracks that split the Chinese-American Lee family widen, becoming the central plot of this gripping debut novel. Lydia Lee is James ...

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Celeste Ng: Everything I Never Told You Celeste Ng’s debut novel Everything I Never Told You begins with a blunt statement of fact: “Lydia is dead. But they don’t know this yet.” From there, pasts focus and encroach upon the present, and the cracks that split the Chinese-American Lee family widen, becoming the central plot of this gripping debut novel.

Lydia Lee is James and Marilyn’s star child, the girl on whom they pin their own unrealized hopes: in James’s case, to be popular; in Marilyn’s case, to become a doctor. The mixed-race Lees struggle to fit in, or even feel comfortable, in affluent, small-town Ohio, where James teaches and Marilyn stays at home. So when Lydia is found dead in a nearby lake, grief tilts the Lees’ carefully assembled equilibrium into total turmoil. Lydia’s family—her mother, father, brother, and sister—struggle, just as they always have, but somehow now under a brighter light, to figure out not only each other, but also their family’s place in a hostile society.

Not a murder mystery, Everything I Never Told You is instead a deftly-navigated examination of the permutations a family can take, and the unspoken histories that can define a family’s future.

Everything I Never Told You is a New York Times bestseller and has been named a best book of the year by numerous outlets. Celeste Ng grew up in a family of scientists in the Midwest. She received an MFA from the University of Michigan. Her work has appeared in OneStory, TriQuarterly, Bellevue Literary Review, and the Kenyon Review Online. She has also won a Pushcart Prize. Ng lives in Massachusetts.

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http://www.litshow.com/100/celeste-ng-interview/feed/ 0 celeste ng,fiction Celeste Ng’s debut novel Everything I Never Told You begins with a blunt statement of fact: “Lydia is dead. But they don’t know this yet.” From there, pasts focus and encroach upon the present, and the cracks that split the Chinese-American Lee family ... On this Lit Show, Celeste Ng discusses her novel Everything I Never Told You--a deftly-navigated examination of the permutations a family can take, and the unspoken histories that can define a family’s future. Everything I Never Told You is a New York Times bestseller and has been named a best book of the year by numerous outlets. Celeste Ng grew up in a family of scientists in the Midwest. She received an MFA from the University of Michigan. Her work has appeared in OneStory, TriQuarterly, Bellevue Literary Review, and the Kenyon Review Online. She has also won a Pushcart Prize. Ng lives in Massachusetts. The Lit Show no 26:23
#99: Steven Pinker http://www.litshow.com/099/stephen-pinker-interview/ http://www.litshow.com/099/stephen-pinker-interview/#comments Sun, 20 Sep 2015 20:13:25 +0000 Lucy Schiller http://www.litshow.com/?p=4192 Is that slim, ubiquitous little volume by Strunk and White obsolete? Have those elements that they so strictly defined as essential to good prose style changed and mutated with the advent of email, textspeak, emoji, and LOLcats? Cognitive scientist and linguist Steven Pinker’s latest book The Sense of Style: The Thinking Person’s Guide to Writing ...

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Steven Pinker's The Sense of Style Is that slim, ubiquitous little volume by Strunk and White obsolete? Have those elements that they so strictly defined as essential to good prose style changed and mutated with the advent of email, textspeak, emoji, and LOLcats?

Cognitive scientist and linguist Steven Pinker’s latest book The Sense of Style: The Thinking Person’s Guide to Writing in the 21st Century swoops in to answer these questions, and also to serve, perhaps, as a thoughtful, timely guide to writing with clear and purposeful style. Pinker is generous—he views the task of learning good style not as a quest into the perilous wilds of grammar, but as “a form of pleasurable mastery, like cooking or photography.” Strunk’s famous salvos (“Omit needless words,” most memorably) seem in comparison almost boot-camp commands. “Perfecting the craft [of writing] is a lifelong calling,” Pinker writes, “and mistakes are part of the game.”

Informed by his extensive background in cognitive science and linguistics, Pinker dissects all sorts of writing—a campus press release advertising a “panel on sex with four professors,” a newsletter by a birdseed salesman on Cape Cod, academic texts, a novel—to identify the components and patterns of good (and bad) style. And Pinker must be taking his own advice: The Sense of Style is remarkable for its verve, clarity, and ultimate accessibility.

Steven Pinker will be reading from The Sense of Style: The Thinking Person’s Guide to Writing in the 21st Century at the Iowa City Public Library on September 22 at 7pm. Pinker is the Johnstone Family Professor in the Department of Psychology at Harvard University, and has also taught at Stanford and MIT. His previous books include The Language Instinct, How the Mind Works, The Blank Slate, and The Better Angels of Our Nature. He is also Chair of the Usage Panel of the American Heritage Dictionary.

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http://www.litshow.com/099/stephen-pinker-interview/feed/ 0 Is that slim, ubiquitous little volume by Strunk and White obsolete? Have those elements that they so strictly defined as essential to good prose style changed and mutated with the advent of email, textspeak, emoji, and LOLcats? - Cognitive scientist Steven Pinker on 21st-century grammar, why Strunk and White is obsolete, and the need for a style manual for the future. The Lit Show no 21:51
Q & A: Hassan Blasim http://www.litshow.com/q-and-a/hassan-blasim http://www.litshow.com/q-and-a/hassan-blasim#comments Mon, 26 May 2014 18:53:23 +0000 Joe Fassler http://www.litshow.com/?p=4137 Illustration: Alex Fine “Q & A” is an interview series featuring contemporary writers and illustrations by Alex Fine.  Last week, writer and filmmaker Hassan Blasim won the U.K.’s International Foreign Fiction Prize for his collection, The Iraqi Christ.  As The Guardian reported, he’s the first Arabic writer to win the award—which he shares with his translator, Jonathan Wright—in ...

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Illustration: Alex Fine

“Q & A” is an interview series featuring contemporary writers and illustrations by Alex Fine

Last week, writer and filmmaker Hassan Blasim won the U.K.’s International Foreign Fiction Prize for his collection, The Iraqi Christ.  As The Guardian reported, he’s the first Arabic writer to win the award—which he shares with his translator, Jonathan Wright—in its 24-year history. Earlier this year, The Guardian had called Blasim “perhaps the best writer of Arabic fiction alive,” and his debut in English heralds the arrival of an indispensable literary voice.

The Corpse Exhibition, which combines pieces from The Iraqi Christ and a subsequent collection, The Madmen of Freedom Square, is Blasim’s first work published in the United States. In stories that feel both mythic and viscerally physical, Blasim inserts his own nightmarish brand of magical realism into a grisly, war-torn landscape. The effect is a white-knuckled fictional world where it feels like anything can happen. Here, soldiers assault each other and suicide bombs detonate—and a bureaucrat can speak beyond the grave, a secret society displays corpses as a harrowing form of high-concept art, and a hole in the ground seems to be a portal to a place beyond life.

Throughout, Blasim makes innovative use of frame stories, extended monologue, redacted documents, and tales that nest like A Thousand and One Nights, exploring the way we use narrative to hide our shame, face our fears, and make a case for who we are.

In 1998, when his films attracted the censure of Saddam Hussein’s government, Blasim fled Baghdad for Iraqi Kurdistan. He lived there until 2004, one year into the U.S. invasion, and currently lives in Finland. In his Q & A, Blasim discusses “nightmarish realism,” writing  under Saddam Hussein, and how literature works against violence and oppression.

Translation by Jonathan Wright.

Slots heavenlive dealerrater classifieds - zimbabwe africa What do you love about the short story form–as opposed to the novel?

A novel is a journey that needs time, planning, maps and a compass. A novel is a challenge but a challenge with a touch of arrogance on many occasions. A short story is as wonderful as a parachute jump, a fleeting adventure.

Casino marseille sncm Did you have a favorite short story, or story collection, as you wrote this book–or some other useful model?

There’s no story in particular. When I was writing my stories I was watching many feature films and documentaries about nature, the universe, Iraq, crimes, the Second World War and other subjects and events, and I was reading articles about violence , and novels and short stories, and watching many video clips on the Internet about violence in Iraq.

http://talkvirtualreality.com/wp-content/casino-admiral-cz-znojmo/ Casino admiral cz znojmo You had to flee Baghdad in 1998. Can you explain the circumstances?

I left my country after I was harassed by the Baath Party in the 1990s while I was studying cinema in the arts academy. They were annoyed by my activity making short films and documentaries. I had made some short films and the atmosphere was tense, so I decided to leave Baghdad because I felt severely restricted in all aspects of life under a harsh dictatorship. I wanted to talk freely about my life and the lives of others. I was also in constant fear of detention after they threatened me directly.

http://telegenova.it/wp-content/casinos-in-michigan-where-you-can-be-18/ Casinos in michigan where you can be 18 What was it like to write these stories, set in your home country, while in exile?

In the first years it was difficult in exile. Today it doesn’t make a difference whether I’m in my own country or in exile. Of course I miss family and places and friends. But as far as I am concerned the world is now like a hotel. Every country I have lived in is like a room in a hotel in this mysterious and surprising world. And in every room you can think and write and dream.

Free casino games no download flv What was it like to be a literary writer under Saddam Hussein? How has your profession changed as Iraq has  Leveller roulette system changed since then, as your life has changed since then?

In the time of the dictator it wasn’t possible to write freely. Today there’s relatively more space but the dangers are also greater. Before there was the dictator’s police and security agencies. Now there are the security agencies and the militias, and terrorism and mafias and intervention by neighbouring and distant countries in all parts of the country. In recent years Iraq has been like a maelstrom of horror and death. My life changed early, once I started writing, and it is constantly changing because of my restlessness, thinking, writing and hope in humanity.

http://achabrasilia.com/articles/slot-car-track-builder-online-game/ Slot car track builder online game You’ve said you’re more interested in writing about situations on the margins, not the big events that journalists write about. What does this book capture that you haven’t seen in writing or reportage before?

The media presents what is happening in Iraq in the form of fast food for the audience. Literature examines what is happening through imagination. Imagination does not provide fast food that is easy to digest. It is more thoughtful and it is not interested in profit at the expense of the truth.

Mayan princess slots games This book blends gritty hyper-realism with a sense of heightened, almost magical possibility. Does fabulism help capture the horrors of combat, or life during war, in a way straightforward narratives or reportage can’t?

The violence that has taken place in Iraq has reached the most extreme peaks of insanity. It is not magical realism, it is nightmarish realism. Horrifying hallucination. There are writers who write realistically, in the form of reportage. Every writer is free to choose. As far as I am concerned, literature is a way to challenge reality, and the reality of Iraq needs a wild, confrontational imagination, not literature that is factual and cold.

http://edmtribe.com/wordpress/sitemap19/ Knock out blackjack pdf download Kafka, Borges, Bolano–these are the writers who come to mind as I read these stories. Are any of them important to you?

I’m an admirer of Kafka and Borges, but I hadn’t read Bolano before. I’ve started reading Bolano, after the Guardian compared my stories with his work.

http://berkeleysc.com/awstats-icon/bovada-casino-review-tgr/ Bovada casino review tgr Who are the Iraqi authors, or non-Iraqi authors writing in Arabic, that you especially admire?

In short stories there’s Adnan al-Mubarak and in novels Inaam Kachachi, Muhsin al-Ramli and Sinan Antoun.

Booty Time slot What are the challenges of choosing a war-ravaged place as a setting or theme?

Throughout the history of literature we’ve been writing and talking about war and peace. For me, the challenge lies in the writing process, whether I’m sitting in the woods in Finland or in a poor part of Baghdad. What do we want to say and how? It’s the new old story.

http://catvideos.buzz/wp-content/slotter-casino-lobby-bovada-casino-scam-trickshot-marvel/ Slotter casino lobby bovada casino scam trickshot marvel If you could require soldiers–of any nationality–to read one work of literature, what would it be?

I’m not suggesting any book to any soldier in the world. I suggest that they don’t go and kill people, whatever happens. Let them enjoy reading, and love, and become anti-war activists and defenders of people’s right to live in peace. Perhaps I’m an idealist but wars are a disgrace to us as humans.

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#98: Beginning, Middle, End – Between the First and Final Drafts http://www.litshow.com/098/first-final-drafts http://www.litshow.com/098/first-final-drafts#comments Tue, 06 May 2014 14:08:07 +0000 Gemma de Choisy http://www.litshow.com/?p=4124 A craft talk featuring Mesha Maren and Lawrence Ypil, with Lit Show host Gemma de Choisy. Tuesday, May 6th at 2 PM CST. To listen live, tune in to 89.7 in Iowa City, or download KRUI’s webstream and open in iTunes.

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A craft talk featuring Mesha Maren and Lawrence Ypil, with Lit Show host Gemma de Choisy.

Tuesday, May 6th at 2 PM CST.

To listen live, tune in to 89.7 in Iowa City, or download KRUI’s webstream and open in iTunes.

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#97: Leslie Jamison http://www.litshow.com/097/leslie-jamison http://www.litshow.com/097/leslie-jamison#comments Tue, 01 Apr 2014 13:31:55 +0000 Gemma de Choisy http://www.litshow.com/?p=4072 The essays in The Empathy Exams, the lauded debut collection from Leslie Jamison, range widely in topic – from illness to incarceration, reality television to extreme foot races, artificial sweeteners to street violence – but their subject is constant and essential. How may we understand each other? each essay asks. In Jamison’s terms, this also means, How may we share ...

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The Lit Show Inteview: The Empathy Exams by Leslie Jamison

The essays in The Empathy Exams, the lauded debut collection from Leslie Jamison, range widely in topic – from illness to incarceration, reality television to extreme foot races, artificial sweeteners to street violence – but their subject is constant and essential. How may we understand each other? each essay asks. In Jamison’s terms, this also means, How may we share our pain? 

In an early review of the book, poet and memoirist Mary Karr writes, “Leslie Jamison has written a profound exploration into how empathy depends us…This riveting book will make you a better human.” I’m particularly taken with this endorsement, not only for its (in my opinion, totally deserved) bravado, but for its familiarity where empathy is concerned. In the 1960s, clinical psychologist Carl Rogers opined that, rather or in addition to making patients happier, therapy should help make a person better. Kinder. More patient. More forgiving of themselves and others. In other words, therapy should help a person “grow,” and could do so by cultivating an environment that encouraged honesty, offered acceptance, and, most importantly, provided empathy: not sympathy, which is too close to pity, but compassion’s piercing, more understanding cousin.

“Empathy,” Jamison writes in her collection’s title essay, “means realizing no trauma has discrete edges.” But, she concedes, it is an act that demands more than epiphany: “Empathy isn’t just something that happens to us – a meteor shower of synapses firing across the brain – it’s also a choice we make: to pay attention, extend ourselves.” The Empathy Exams compiles works from approximately three years (2009 – 2012) of Jamison’s career, during which she did exactly that. She paid attention. And her essays, while deeply personal, extend far beyond her own life, into the oeuvre of human pleasures as well as pains. “This is the essay at its creative, philosophical best,” writes Eleanor Catton, author of The Luminaries, and Robert Polito, the judge of Graywolf Press’s 2013 Nonfiction Contest agrees. “When we chance upon a work and a writer who summons and dares the full tilt of all her volatile resources, intellectual and emotional, personal and historical,” says Polito, “the effect is…disorienting, astonishing.”

In addition to The Empathy Exams, Jamison is the author of a novel, The Gin Closet, which was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times First Fiction Prize. Her essays have appeared in Harper’s, Oxford Ameican, Tin House, and The Believer,where you can find the title essay of her collection in full, online. Jamison is currently completing a PhD in English at Yale University. She lives in Brooklyn, New York.

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http://www.litshow.com/097/leslie-jamison/feed/ 0 graywolf,interview,iowa,leslie jamison,nonfiction,the empathy exams,yale The essays in The Empathy Exams, the lauded debut collection from Leslie Jamison, range widely in topic - from illness to incarceration, reality television to extreme foot races, artificial sweeteners to street violence - but their subject is constant ... Leslie Jamison, author of The Empathy Exams, discusses her new essay collection. Interview by Gemma de Choisy. The Lit Show no 35:47
#96: David Lazar http://www.litshow.com/096/david-lazar http://www.litshow.com/096/david-lazar#comments Wed, 26 Mar 2014 22:53:43 +0000 Gemma de Choisy http://www.litshow.com/?p=4056 Pity Iowa City, dear Lit Show listeners; we’re having a rough time of it. First N+1 brews a familiar tempest in a well-used teacup with the publication of MFA vs. NYC, a book debating the pros and cons of writers either testing their water wings in the freelancing pool, or seeking instruction in graduate school. ...

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Pity Iowa City, dear Lit Show listeners; we’re having a rough time of it.

First N+1 brews a familiar tempest in a well-used teacup with the publication of MFA vs. NYC, a book debating the pros and cons of writers either testing their water wings in the freelancing pool, or seeking instruction in graduate school. Now we hear Hannah Horvath, the protagonist of HBO’s series Girls is heading our way, having been accepted to the esteemed Iowa Writers’ Workshop. . . despite the fact that her character is a self-declared essayist. (The Workshop, you see, hosts masters racks in poetry and fiction, while nonfiction students belong to a separate MFA program.) The point is, regardless of genre, Iowa MFA students suddenly seem to have a lot to explain; all this, and it’s thesis deposit season. We’re tired. Our thumbs are sore from tweeting. So thank god the Mission Creek festival is right around the corner, and thank god for the visiting writers who bring fresh air and perspective.

The Lit Show: David LazarThis week, the University of Iowa’s Nonfiction Program was proud to present David Lazar, whose latest collection of essays, Occasional Desire, has been hailed as “raising the bar for all contemporary literary nonfiction,” by fellow-essayist and iconoclast Philip Lopate. Lazar is the author of six acclaimed books of nonfiction, including The Body of Brooklyn, Powder Town and the award-winning Conversations with MFK Fisher. He is also the author of two highly influential collections of essays on craft in nonfiction, Essaying the Essay and Truth in Nonfiction. A long time champion of the essay, and of creative writing in academia, Lazar established Columbia College’s Creative Nonfiction MFA program in 2010, after spending 16 years with Ohio University, where he founded one of the country’s first creative writing doctoral programs. He is also the founding editor of the ground-breaking and genre-bending journal Hotel Amerika, which just celebrated its thirteenth year.

Today, at 10am, he will be hosting a Masters Class in the Gerber Lounge of the English-Philosophy Building. He will be discussing some of his favorite literary journals, and the work that goes into starting and maintaining them.

http://coupononlinecodes.net/wp-includes/golden-nugget-casino-official-site/ Golden nugget casino official site David Lazar on transgeneric work, anthologizing, and aphorisms, plus a reading from Occasional Desire:

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http://www.litshow.com/096/david-lazar/feed/ 0 Pity Iowa City, dear Lit Show listeners; we're having a rough time of it. - First N+1 brews a familiar tempest in a well-used teacup with the publication of MFA vs. NYC, a book debating the pros and cons of writers either testing their water wings in ... David Lazar, author of Occasional Desire, discusses his nonfiction and transgeneric work. Interview by Gemma de Choisy. The Lit Show no 45:04
#95: Book Country http://www.litshow.com/095/book-country-brandi-larsen http://www.litshow.com/095/book-country-brandi-larsen#comments Mon, 25 Nov 2013 14:55:52 +0000 Joe Fassler http://www.litshow.com/?p=4032 This episode features Brandi Larsen, Director of Book Country, a website run by the publisher Penguin Random House. Book Country is an online community where writers connect, workshop, and publish original work. Imagine a LinkedIn for publishing-minded people: alongside credentials and publication credits, writers can read and critique one another’s works-in-progress. Book Country also helps ...

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Book Country: The Lit Show interview with Brandi LarsenThis episode features Brandi Larsen, Director of Book Country, a website run by the publisher Penguin Random House.

Book Country is an online community where writers connect, workshop, and publish original work. Imagine a LinkedIn for publishing-minded people: alongside credentials and publication credits, writers can read and critique one another’s works-in-progress. Book Country also helps writers with the publication process, with a free service that makes a finished manuscript available through all the major e-retailers, or paid services that include proofreading, formatting, and cover design. Finally, the site helps book professionals discover new voices: on Book Country, agents and editors look for promising manuscripts to publish traditionally.

Self-published E-books have become a big business, as anyone who’s heard of Fifty Shades of Grey knows. This hour, we talk about self-publishing, Book Country’s place in the e-book landscape, and what the site’s growth might mean for readers and writers.

Complete Episode

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http://www.litshow.com/095/book-country-brandi-larsen/feed/ 0 book country,brandi larsen,ebooks,fiction,interview,joe fassler,lucy silag,nonfiction,self-publishing This episode features Brandi Larsen, Director of Book Country, a website run by the publisher Penguin Random House. - Book Country is an online community where writers connect, workshop, and publish original work. This episode features Brandi Larsen, Director of Book Country, a website run by the publisher Penguin Random House. Book Country is an online community where writers connect, workshop, and publish original work. Imagine a LinkedIn for publishing-minded people: alongside credentials and publication credits, writers can read and critique one another’s works-in-progress. Book Country also helps writers with the publication process, with a free service that makes a finished manuscript available through all the major e-retailers, or paid services that include proofreading, formatting, and cover design. Finally, the site helps book professionals discover new voices: on Book Country, agents and editors look for promising manuscripts to publish traditionally. Self-published E-books have become a big business, as anyone who’s heard of Fifty Shades of Grey knows. This hour, we talk about self-publishing, Book Country’s place in the e-book landscape, and what the site's growth might mean for readers and writers. The Lit Show no 56:57
#94: Andre Dubus III http://www.litshow.com/094/andre-dubus-iii http://www.litshow.com/094/andre-dubus-iii#comments Tue, 19 Nov 2013 16:16:43 +0000 Joe Fassler http://www.litshow.com/?p=4015 Andre Dubus III’s new book, Dirty Love, published by W. W. Norton, collects four long stories about love and betrayal. All the main characters are held in thrall somehow by sex or passion: the project manager who stalks his unfaithful wife and obsesses ragefully over her lover, the woman whose long-held virginity has become a ...

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Andre Dubus | Dirty Love: The Lit Show Interview

Andre Dubus III’s new book, Dirty Love, published by W. W. Norton, collects four long stories about love and betrayal. All the main characters are held in thrall somehow by sex or passion: the project manager who stalks his unfaithful wife and obsesses ragefully over her lover, the woman whose long-held virginity has become a point of shame and pride, the teenager haunted by a sexually explicit video that surfaces online. An editor from The New Republic called the book “electrifying” and described physically ripping out its pages so she could fit it in a crammed bookbag before a subway ride.

Dubus is the author of books including The House of Sand and Fog (a finalist for the National Book Award), The Garden of Last Days, and a Townie. We discussed infidelity and marriage vows, how to write convincingly about sex, and the ways his short stories find their proper form over time. We also talked about Dubus’s memories of growing up with his famous writer father, Andre Dubus, in Iowa City–where he watched Batman with Kurt Vonnegut as a boy–and how a literary upbringing influenced his career choice.

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http://www.litshow.com/094/andre-dubus-iii/feed/ 0 andre dubus iii,books,brooklyn,interview,joe fassler,lit,literary,podcast Andre Dubus III's new book, Dirty Love, published by W. W. Norton, collects four long stories about love and betrayal. All the main characters are held in thrall somehow by sex or passion: the project manager who stalks his unfaithful wife and obsesses... Andre Dubus discusses his collection of long stories, Dirty Love, with Joe Fassler. The Lit Show no 1:14:28
#92: Don Waters http://www.litshow.com/092/don-waters http://www.litshow.com/092/don-waters#comments Mon, 11 Nov 2013 04:35:45 +0000 R. Clifton Spargo http://www.litshow.com/?p=3994 On this episode of the Lit Show R. Clifton Spargo speaks to Don Waters, a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, about his debut novel Sunland.

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Sunland by Don Waters: The Lit Show Interview

On this episode of the Lit Show R. Clifton Spargo speaks to Don Waters, a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, where he was an Arts Fellow, about his debut novel Sunland.

Waters is also the author of the story collection Desert Gothic, which won the Iowa Short Fiction Award.  His short fiction has been awarded a Pushcart Prize and anthologized in Best of the West and New Stories from the Southwest.  A frequent contributor to the San Francisco Chronicle, he’s written for the New York Times Book ReviewThe BelieverSlate, and Outside. 

The hero of Sunland, Sid Dulaney, is a thirty-something drifter on a mission to care for a sickly grandmother, his only real family, but Sid finds himself acting as a small-time drug mule to keep up with her retirement expenses.  Though he runs mostly prescription meds and a few opiates from pharmacies in Nogales across the border and sells them to American retirees, he fears he’s in too deep and tries to hand off the business to a friend.  Thereafter the fatalistic combination of misfortune, misguided advice from friends, and some well-timed coercion from a few cartel-connected types catches him up in a haphazard human trafficking scheme.  The ensuing misadventures expose the often absurdist politics presiding over the borderlands between the Southwest United States and Mexico. 

Robert Boswell calls Sunland “a seriously comic novel about the expense of good intentions in the twenty-first century.”


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http://www.litshow.com/092/don-waters/feed/ 0 On this episode of the Lit Show R. Clifton Spargo speaks to Don Waters, a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, about his debut novel Sunland. (http://www.litshow.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/cover_don_waters-200x300.jpg) On this episode of the Lit Show R. Clifton Spargo speaks to Don Waters, a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, where he was an Arts Fellow, about his debut novel Sunland. Waters is also the author of the story collection Desert Gothic, which won the Iowa Short Fiction Award.  His short fiction has been awarded a Pushcart Prize and anthologized in Best of the West and New Stories from the Southwest.  A frequent contributor to the San Francisco Chronicle, he’s written for the New York Times Book Review, The Believer, Slate, and Outside.  The hero of Sunland, Sid Dulaney, is a thirty-something drifter on a mission to care for a sickly grandmother, his only real family, but Sid finds himself acting as a small-time drug mule to keep up with her retirement expenses.  Though he runs mostly prescription meds and a few opiates from pharmacies in Nogales across the border and sells them to American retirees, he fears he’s in too deep and tries to hand off the business to a friend.  Thereafter the fatalistic combination of misfortune, misguided advice from friends, and some well-timed coercion from a few cartel-connected types catches him up in a haphazard human trafficking scheme.  The ensuing misadventures expose the often absurdist politics presiding over the borderlands between the Southwest United States and Mexico.  Robert Boswell calls Sunland “a seriously comic novel about the expense of good intentions in the twenty-first century.” Complete Episode The Lit Show no 57:16
#93: Francesca Rendle-Short http://www.litshow.com/092/francesca-rendle-short http://www.litshow.com/092/francesca-rendle-short#comments Tue, 29 Oct 2013 12:07:41 +0000 Gemma de Choisy http://www.litshow.com/?p=3978 Her first book, Imago (Spinifex Press) was hailed as a complex debut, “sensual, and absolutely fascinating.” Since that book’s release, Francesca Rendle-Short has quickly established herself as one of the most innovative essayists working in contemporary Australian literature. Rendle-Short’s most recent publication is Bite Your Tongue (Spinifex Press), a hybrid work blending fiction and memoir, ...

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Francesca Rendle-Short: The Lit Show interviewHer first book, Imago (Spinifex Press) was hailed as a complex debut, “sensual, and absolutely fascinating.” Since that book’s release, Francesca Rendle-Short has quickly established herself as one of the most innovative essayists working in contemporary Australian literature.

Rendle-Short’s most recent publication is Bite Your Tongue (Spinifex Press), a hybrid work blending fiction and memoir, exploring the the relationship between the author’s very real and complicated mother, a book-burning moral crusader, and the fictionalized child whom Rendle-Short says, “speaks as I wish I could have spoken.” Bite Your Tongue has been lauded as “a mother-daughter tale unlike any other…feisty, idiosyncratic and original…full of weird energies and wonderful affections.” It has received numerous Australian literary awards and was named this year’s “Book of the Year” by The Australian Book Review.

Francesca Rendle-Short is also the author of the novella Big Sister (Redress Novellas) and the co-author with Felicity Packard of the play Us. In addition to her creative writing, Rendle-Short has worked as a radio producer, editor, teacher, and arts journalist. Based in Melbourne, Australia, she directs the creative writing program at RMIT University, as well as its nationally acclaimed NonfictionLab. She is the University of Iowa’s 2013 International Writing Fellow.

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#82: Mary Jo Bang (Interview Transcript) http://www.litshow.com/2013/10/21/82-mary-jo-bang-interview-transcript/ http://www.litshow.com/2013/10/21/82-mary-jo-bang-interview-transcript/#comments Mon, 21 Oct 2013 12:33:20 +0000 Lucas Sheelk http://www.litshow.com/?p=3969 Transcription of The Lit Show interview with Mary Jo Bang by Lucas Sheelk. Listen to this interview. Micah Bateman: So I’m Micah Bateman here with Ben Mauk on The Lit Show, and today we have with us Mary Jo Bang. Mary Jo Bang is the author of; correct me if I’m wrong, six books of poetry now, ...

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Transcription of The Lit Show interview with Mary Jo Bang by Lucas Sheelk. Listen to this interview.

Slots nh Micah Bateman: So I’m Micah Bateman here with Ben Mauk on The Lit Show, and today we have with us Mary Jo Bang. Mary Jo Bang is the author of; correct me if I’m wrong, six books of poetry now, and is a professor of English at Washington University in St. Louis. One of her books of poetry, Ella G, was awarded the National Book Critics Circle award in 2007, and among other things, we’re having her discuss her latest book, which is a wild and imaginative translation of Dante’s Inferno. So I thought we would get it kicked off by having Mary Jo read a section for us.

http://theartofbeinghuman.org/wp-content/casino-spielautomaten-mieten-oder-kaufen-hausen-am-albis/ Casino spielautomaten mieten oder kaufen hausen am albis Mary Jo Bang: I’m going to start at the beginning with Canto I:

Stopped mid motion in the middle of what we call our life, looked up and saw no sky, only a dense cage, leaf,

tree, and twig, I was lost. It’s difficult to describe a worst, savage, arduous dream in its extremity. I think, and

the facts come back, then the fear comes back. Death, I believe can only be slightly more bitter. I can’t address

the good I found there until I describe in detail what else I saw.  I don’t know for certain how I entered it. I was

so sleepy-faced at the place where I took a wrong path, when the wooded valley I just passed through in heart-

rending terror dead ended at the foot of a hill. I looked up and saw the sun bright on the body of the hill’s high

spot, like the headlight that helps the lost find the way. The turbulent fear that had filled my heart during the night

 I had passed in such sadness [count saw?] when I saw it, like someone breathless after an escape from the dead end.

The stands at the side of the pool and looks back on the danger in list of close calls, that’s how I looked back.

My mind a stopped top in the middle of a turn, for a glimpse of where I’d been, a place no one leaves alive.

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http://pdn.com.ua/report/snip-23-03-2003-status.html снип 23 03 2003 статус Mary Jo Bang: I can. I read a poem by the British conceptual poet Caroline Bergvall. Her poem is a found poem that takes the first three lines of 47 lines of translation of the Inferno, and lists them alphabetically by the first letter of the first line. She includes the attribution to the translator, and the date. It’s a very mesmerizing experience reading it, because it’s repetition, but repetition with revision. When I read it, was, on the page; she has since made a sound piece of it, which you can find online on her website (carolinebergvall.com), I think.

I was struck with 47 translations, but none of them alike. The original Italian is quite simple, and she put that at the top of the list of translations. In the middle of our life, I came to myself in a dark wood, the right path was lost. And yet 47 people did it each in their own way, which I think demonstrates how many ways there is to say something, no matter how simple.

What’s being said is, and then the kind of liberty that each translator takes, to choose words to try to really communicate the depth of whatever is being said. I was curious, now that we have all those translations, and there’s many more, there are over two hundred translations of Inferno into English; how would I do it? What if I could take more liberties than had previously been taken? Maybe even impose on it some new kind of music that would be more align with contemporary poetry.

I began, and I did those three lines, and once I did the three lines, I thought, “Well, that was fun, maybe I’ll do some more lines.” I had a translation; it’s the Charles Singleton translation, which is a somewhat literal prose, also rather elevated. It uses “thoust” and “canst.” I started in on the next three lines, and the next three. At that point I realized that I had had all of these guides like Virgil. For the first three lines, there had been 47 examples, and now I was only using one. I went to the library, I got 12 translations, and I decided that I would do the whole first Canto, which is a hundred and thirty some lines. When I finished that, I was still having fun, and I decided I would keep going and do all 34 Cantos.

Free games casino avatars MB: Great. Well, what was the fun of the process?

Online slots casino ashtrays MJB: The fun was like a word game. In some ways, over time, it became like a crossword puzzle. If you’ve ever done crossword puzzles, you’d know that there’d be a cluster of words, and you’ll decide what word fits in a five square section. Based on that, you’ll be able to solve more words around that. But if that word isn’t right, if that first word isn’t right, you’re going to get stuck because things aren’t going to fit. Then you have to reconsider that first word. When you do get the correct word, everything falls into place, and then you’ll go forward. Then you have that same experience again where you solve wrongly, and then things stop, and you have to go back, reconsider. The whole thing was like that, where I would find a word, be able to go forward, and then think, “No, this isn’t working out. This isn’t really what he’s trying to say.” Or, it’s flat; it’s not an interesting way to say it. Or, something that would make me feel unsettled about how I had resolved it. But, then that excitement of going back and finding a better way to do it, and that process of success/failure, success/failure, actually becomes a little addictive. You want that excitement of solving something, so you go forward, and even when you’re frustrated, know that if you just keep working, you’ll come to that moment, that little eureka moment. It’s so satisfying. That kept me going for six years.

http://viewzee.com/config/sitemap57.html проблемы не пугают и кризис не побьет MB: Wow. It sounds almost like the process is kind of a constraint based poetics, almost.

поздравление православного человека с днем рождения MJB: Yeah, the constraint being the original poem. The Italian language, the historical bases of it, there’s so many constraints. You’re juggling those, all the time. It’s very intellectually rich.

Solaris pci slot config MB: It’s funny that you mention crossword puzzles because I know that’s how lipian writers would often refer to their… Crossword puzzles were sort of a point of reference for them when they were talking about their projects. The lipians are known for their kind of sense of play and fun, the idea that writing should be kind of fun rather than torturous.

Online casino hoher bonus MJB: Well, and that whole idea of constraint based method of composition. I think translation is, and I’d never thought it about that way, Micah, you’re absolutely right that translation itself is a constraint based method of writing. You somewhat define the constraint yourself, in terms of how rigorous you want to be, in terms of accuracy. Even though that word, accuracy, doesn’t even exist in translation, or shouldn’t exist. How does one carry across, particularly in poetry, the idea of a poem? Even if you find the word, “table,” and you substitute table, you have this other kind of mandate, which is to make it poetic.

http://bartdogmedia.com/components/sitemap5.html двойное вязание спицами описание MB: Did you find that it was more constraining or liberating to have so many, to have the dozen English translations at your disposal that you used?

Instant online casino bonuses MJB: Liberating, for several reasons. One: I could take comfort in the fact that even though I don’t speak Italian, I could see exactly what was going on. Now, I don’t speak Italian, but I do know French somewhat and there’s a lot of overlap. There are a lot of cognates, words that look the same in both languages, in Italian and in English, for instance, miseria, and so it looks like misery.

You can take 12 translations, and interestingly enough, only 5 of the translators used misery in that place where that word goes. Other people will use, “despair,” “sorrow,” “suffering.” By looking at that, you see how much leeway you have, how much permission you have to come up with a word that means that today. That was the other thing, that is, I didn’t want to just be accurate. I wanted to be accurate for today. The fact is that we have so many more words now than Dante would have had in the medieval period. That meant I had choices that he never had. If I tried to fall back on our shared position of being poets, then I could try to see what poetically would work in that place, what would work best.

Kwin casino games MB: Did you find yourself doing a lot of Latinate vocabulary to Anglo-Saxon vocabulary kind of translating?

http://zacksguide.com/users/best-casino-game-bet365/ Best casino game bet365 MJB: I don’t think I was ever hyper-aware of that. I think we do become aware of that in poems. The poems that we write, opposed to this book-length poem, and of course we know Inferno’s only one third of this book-length poem, the Divine Comedy, so I think when you have a small poem, let’s say 14 lines, a sonnet, we’re hyper-aware of what kind of language we’re using. For one reason, because of the sound, the different sounds of the Latinate versus the guttural Anglo-Saxon. It calls attention to itself.

I don’t think that I had that in my head as wanting to achieve a certain balance between those kinds of language. My perspective was, “This word, now this word, now this word,” and then back up to see what the tone was, what the register was, what the sound patterning was. But not with that, that never entered into my head. For one thing, Dante has done all the work, in terms of telling me what he wants me to say. That is what I was ultimately true to, so that if I would take a tercet, a three line stanza from Dante; I would think, “Okay, now what has to be in the English?”

The middle, say the first famous three line stanza, “In the middle of our life, I found myself in a dark wood, the right path was lost.” So, it had to say “middle.” It had to say “dark.” It had to say “forest.” It had to say “path” and “lost.” In those 47, for instance, the translations that Bergvall used, there are many, many, many ways of saying all those things, but those are the essential things. Those have to be said.

поздравление тетушке с днем рождения MB: That does also seem that… I mean, you say that Dante did all the work, but some of the work that you’re doing is having sort of creating a Dante, this sort of homuncular Dante put in contemporary, you know, put in a contemporary setting. That’s interesting to me, to have to think, “What would Dante have used this more contemporarily, would he have used ‘clinical depression’ instead of ‘misery’,” because now we have clinical depression as a term.

Mr green casino blacklist MJB: Right. Yeah, and yet, it would have to justify putting “clinical depression” in a poem. If, depending on what you’re going to do with that, there are still languages that are more or less poetic, higher or lower on the poetry thermometer. There’s so many ways of saying that too. In order to be true to any kind of poem, you don’t want to spell too much out. Part of the beauty, part of the joy that poetry readers find in reading poetry is teasing apart layers of meaning, the ambiguity of words, the fact that they do mean more than one thing. You don’t want to go into something that’s so straightforward that’s reductive. Clinical depression, it takes away the ineffability of these emotional and psychic states that as human beings we experience. They’re very, very complicated. For each of us, there’s a different set of complications. There’s some shared ones, and that’s why language works, and we can communicate the language, but on the other hand, I didn’t want anything to be more reductive than Dante was making it in the original.

http://mobilindeks.com/kupon/casino-slot-games-for-free-picture/ Casino slot games for free picture MB: I’m super impressed that you were inspired to do this project by being confronted by the Bergvall 47 translations of the first three lines. To me, that would be just so anxious, I wouldn’t know what to do. But you kind of found a spirit of freedom in it rather than an anxiety. Can you describe the process of negotiating all of these translations, and actually finding inspiration in them as opposed to being shut down by them?

http://td-bks.ru/statement/15-as-109-harakteristiki.html 15 ас 109 характеристики MJB: Well, I think that because many of them are elevated in tone and language, so as I said before, they incorporate things like “thoust” and “canst”; it was very clear to me that translators were making that decision to do that because they wanted to gesture to the fact that this is a very old poem. It was written probably in 1306, perhaps was the first Canto. I thought that, for me, reading, and I’ve read other translations prior to engaging the poem in this manner, that was always rather off-putting. It felt unnecessary for one thing, because you can tell someone anywhere on the cover, in the introduction, that this was a poem written in 1306.

To keep reminding one, line-by-line, by using language from another era, plus the language that’s being used is not from 1300. So, perhaps it’s being used from 1700 or 1800. The gesture for grounds itself and says, “Oh, this is the only reason why I’m doing that,” and I think that poetically speaking, those are not good ways to solve something in a poem, is to only have one use of it. I thought, “What if I let that go, and make it sound like it is contemporary, in the sense that the language we use?”

Now, Dante himself, and he wrote about this, afterward or during the time that he was working on the poem… He said that he had made a decision not to use literary Latin for his poem, which was the logical thing because most poetry was written in literary Latin. The fact is that in Italy at that time, there were many, many dialects. At least 18, probably even more than that, so twenty something dialects, which meant that people in the North would not be able to necessarily read easily anything written by somebody in the South, or maybe even speak to them.

The fact is also that literary Latin would only have been spoken by, or read by, the clergy and scholars. Dante said, “I want everyone to be able to read this poem.” In addition, he said, “Latin is too noble a language.” It’s elevated just by virtue of the fact that it’s frozen in time. He said, “The vernacular is what we use to talk to each other in. We talk to our loved ones. We talk to our friends. Our children. Our neighbors. The very language has an emotional sub straight to it. I want this poem to have all of that. A language that’s frozen in time is not going to change. I want this to change in time, and I know that the vernacular does.”

When he says that, “I want it to change”, I think he means, “I want the person reading it to experience it in their own time, in the way that I’m talking to them.” It seemed to me that putting the poem into the colloquial language was exactly consistent with his choice to use the vernacular.

Casinos online jet MB: Inconsistent with the oral tradition of poetry too, right?

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http://alkyone.be/wp-content/free-cashable-casino-money/ Free cashable casino money MB: The idea that once you write it down it’s kind of frozen. It’s interesting that Dante could sort of reject this by writing it down, in kind of a vernacular, in a lower vernacular language.

http://pilidrova.ru/i/instruktsiya-signalizatsiya-alligator-d-930.html инструкция сигнализация аллигатор d 930 MJB: Well, what’s brilliant was that he could anticipate several things. One: That we’d still be reading it. There’s a lot of hubris in that, also a lot of confidence. In a good way, not that hubris is necessarily bad, but he was a very arrogant man. If you read different people’s accounts of him, he was arrogant, and he was opinionated. He was very intelligent. He was also very eloquent. The people in Florence were very happy to exile him, because he was such a political [forest?], that when he would stand up, he would be very convincing. That is very dangerous in a political community, as you can imagine. People get power that way. They’re charismatic, they speak, and everyone follows them. One’s strength is sometimes the cause of their alienation from their community.

http://deltafishingtoday.com/tags/slot-machine-9-linee-gratis/ Slot machine 9 linee gratis MB: What was it like getting in Dante’s headspace? I think, correct me if I’m wrong, that he wrote while he was in exile, and he’s this hubristic, wildly visionary, medieval allegorist… What was it like living with him for so long?

http://lkmkr.ru/files/reshenie-zamechatelnih-predelov.html решение замечательных пределов MJB: I think from moment to moment, it could sometimes change. At times, I would be made very nervous by what I was doing, and I would imagine his disapproval. Other times I thought we were friends, and that I had captured something of what he was trying to do, and that he might appreciate that.

I think in the end, and I talked… I gave a panel out in Tucson, Arizona at the Tucson Book Festival with [Vivian?] Alfie, the [dauntist?] who teaches out at the University of Arizona, and I asked him, I said, “People are always asking me whether they think Dante would approve of what I’ve done, and I said that I’ve come to think that he would approve of my, generally, of my making the poem readable for today’s readers, and that the storyline I felt very close to, but I think that in some ways I’ve made it a less Catholic poem. I think that if he were to take issue it would be with that, and Alfie agreed, that he had been able to perceive that as well. I think I did it subtly, but because I did it so consistently, it just diminished the Catholic theological part of this.

Really, the poem’s a mashup of Tuscan history, Greek and Roman myth, and Catholic theology. I think I’ve treated the mythological and the historical with much more rigor, in terms of keeping those as they were than with the theological. As I said, there’s subtle. For instance, in the beginning of the poem, there’s a moment where he says that the highest love was what started the whole universe, and put the stars in place. I have changed that into a love supreme. Now, by doing that, for those people who know that phrase, that’s the title of a John Coltrane album, and song, or musical piece. In that moment when I might have been talking about religion, now I’m talking about two things. I’m talking about John Coltrane and his presence in that because we can’t hear a love supreme without thinking of Coltrane. I’ve diminished the attention on the part of the reader, split it between the highest love, which was god, and John Coltrane, who is, you could say, a divine spirit in terms of jazz and music, and contemporary culture.

Those are the kinds of things I did. I didn’t take away anything, but the way I solved for finding an equivalent on the level of language sometimes does diminish the religious gesture at that point.

http://redciudadana.com.ar/wp-content/casino-royale-alessandra-ambrosio/ Casino royale alessandra ambrosio MB: But it does seem to be like an appropriate isomorphism with how totalizing religion was in Dante’s time, and how totalizing popular culture is our time. It seems like kind of a fair trade.

Play free casino keno games MJB: We would argue that we are more secular than Dante, so that’s what I was saying. But, on the other hand, that zeitgeist for him, he doesn’t have all the things that we have to compete with religion. He’s in a community where that dominant religion is part of the fabric, part of the cultural fabric where one doesn’t step outside and examine that. Although, he is stepping outside, examining it.

He is examining hypocrisy of the Catholic Church. He’s examining the contradictions between the ideal and god’s ideal, which he’s very invested in, and how mankind demonstrates their humanity. For me, that’s what the poem is about. It’s not about heaven and hell. It’s about bad behavior. It’s about how bad behavior destroys the social fabric, so that theology is part of that, but there’s something even more essential. Theology is the guidance for behavior in his poem. It’s not so much, “Let’s just believe because otherwise we’re going to go to hell, “ it’s, “Let theology guide you to live an ideal life, or else you destroy everything.” And, yes, later you’ll go to heaven, but look at the damage you do.

Slot machine casino near los angeles MB: We have been talking about earlier about the translations on a linguistic level, but as Ben brings up, there’s also the translation on the level of the pop culture vernacular that you bring into the book. I’ve read a few reviews of the book that I’ve seen, and it’s one of the reviewers of the book… favorite thing to do is to have a sentence in which they enumerate wild pop culture vernaculars that you bring into it. I think every one I saw brought up South Park, or Eric Cartman. Is it like Ben says and that’s part of the fabric now like theology was part of the fabric then, or how did you decide to start letting those references permeate the text?

http://maystroon.com/update/sitemap51.html горный хрусталь камень свойства MJB: There are a number of impulses out of which those things arose. One is, for instance, you can go back to biblical figures all the time, to have examples, Judas Iscariot. Clearly, he’s the betrayer. If you have any kind of belief system or mythology, you can use these characters as persona, and as allegorical examples. We have a very pluristic society. If you pick somebody from one of those areas, you shut out a lot of other people. Or, people just don’t know who that is that you’re talking about, so they don’t know what it represents.

Popular culture in some ways takes the place of, because no matter what our belief system is, we all share knowledge about popular culture. Some of that changes with age. It’s less likely that a 90 year old is going to be watching South Park than a 20 year old or a 30 year old. But, between 90 and 20s and 30s, a lot of people are going to know, even if they don’t watch the show, what South Park is. Whether they know Eric Cartman, I don’t know. I do. Somebody said, “Oh, good research that you did.” To that, I said, “That’s not research, I’m a fan.”

The way Eric got in there is there are very few characters in the poem who don’t have some historical reference point. A lot of these were people who did live in Tucson, Italy, and Dante’s putting them in hell as a way of demonstrating their errors in life, and how what they did was corrosive to the community.

But, Eric, this character, they’ve never been able to find a historical reference for. So I felt that this was one of the places where I could bring in anybody. The character’s name is Jaco, which is a nickname, and when it’s used, the nickname means “Piggy”, or “Hog”.

Dante meets this person in the level that’s devoted to gluttony, and he says to this guy, “What do they call you when you were alive?” And he said, “They called me ‘Little Piggy’ or ‘Piggy’, and it’s for that sin that I’m here, and there are many others like me here.” I thought, “Who could I choose, because no one’s going to know that Italian Jaco means ‘Piggy’, so there’s going to have to be a note in the back that explains that to us.

Part of that translation project was to try to make this readable so you didn’t have to keep going back to the notes. Who could I plug into that as a translation equivalent that would suggest gluttony or piggishness? So, Jaco, I thought, Michael Jackson is called Jacko. But then it was like, “No, he’s not a glutton. That’s not the problem with Michael Jackson, so he doesn’t fit there as an equivalent. Then suddenly I saw Eric Cartman, who’s a very gluttonous character. He eats pancakes with syrup and powered sugar donuts on top of them. He’s eating cheesy poofs all the time. He’s corrupt in so many ways. There are two episodes where he’s actually called “Little Piggy”, and in one of those he’s forced to sing a song, “I’m a little piggy. Oink, oink, oink! I’m a little piggy. Oink, oink, oink.” His name was Piggy, and so it seemed perfect.

In my translation, and when Dante asks him, “What’s your name,” he says, “My name’s Cartman. I’m sometimes called ‘Little Piggy’.” And then, the South Park creators, Matt Stone and Trey Parker, were kind enough to let us use his image in the illustrations, so that on the same page that that happens, you can look down and you see Eric Cartman and recognize him. Each moment that I did that, when I inserted a modern equivalent; it was very thoughtfully done.

I wasn’t just throwing in a toaster oven or the King of Pop just to be funny, or just to create a cultural landscape that matches ours. In each incident, I’m trying to find something that works, so that while we’re reading it, we’re also getting the same message that Dante had when he put that person in there. There’s humor in what Dante did in that moment, to have someone who’s nickname is Piggy. Again, I felt on the level of translation, that I’m doing exactly what Dante wants in that moment, that is to have that wry sense of humor, is to have this moment that is both serious but is also playful.

You have to keep someone reading. I think that’s the thing that people miss, is it’s very hard to get someone to read poetry. And now, imagine, as hard as that is, get them to read a book length poem. And now, as hard as that is, get them to read a book length poem that was written in the 1300s. You have to do something to enliven the text. You have to do something that makes people think, “This is about me. This isn’t a quaint literary artifact of some bygone era where people behaved in a certain way. This is us. These people. Their sins. Their shortcomings. They’re our shortcomings.

Dante’s very clear that he doesn’t want us to look at these people and think they are not us. His hierarchy of sins, you might think that the violent are at the lowest level of hell, but no, not at all. The people at the lowest level of hell are those who betray others. That’s all of us. We all have the capacity to betray each other by, in small ways, in large ways, and those people are frozen in ice. They have hardened their hearts to each other in order to betray them.

What’s brilliant about the poem is that each punishment matches the sins exactly, and with such creative thought, that it’s convincing on an intellectual level. If it’s convincing on that level, it’s going to convince on the emotional level as well.

правило от осквернения василия великого MB: I think we’ll take a really quick break, and come back with more Lit Show with Mary Jo Bang.

Song plays during short break

Casino puerto vallarta MB: Welcome back to the Lit Show on KRUI. We’re here with co-host Micah Bateman and poet Mary Jo Bang. I was also curious when I was reading reviews, I agreed with all of the spirits of the reviews of this book, and that’s just amazing. I noticed that writing the copy for the webpage that this interview will go up on, I used the word “audacious” and I was just kind of trying to make it seem very wild.

In a way, it felt kind of like that was scripted, whereas the actual text is very measured and conscientious, and true to the Inferno. I think the expectations before people read this were that, “Oh, this would be a wild flight of Mary Jo Bang’s surrealist fancy, and so forth.” Have you met any of those expectations as you’ve been out reading or talking about the book?

http://personaltrainersbristol.co.uk/custom/online-blackjack-scam/ Online blackjack scam MJB: I think when they come into play, is when I sometimes read something and it’s pure translation, and it’s pure Dante. I’m worried that people will think I made it up. The fact is that this poem is very, very contemporary.

There’s such a range of behaviors, of images, of kind of again, what I was saying before, goes up and down on the poetry thermometer. So you have, for instance, a couple of Cantos where there are these tar pit devils who are really crude. They signal to each other by giving each other the raspberry, and their leader then, and this is the actual translation, “makes a trumpet of his ass.”

He’s making some sound from his behind, and this is a way of showing how crude these devils are. When I’m reading that, I think, “Well people will think I’m making this up, that I have layered it over the Dante,” but it’s pure Dante.

There’s a lot of commentary on, this is a very serious poem, how is it and why is it that Dante would choose to have that kind of scatological humor. The most convincing argument that I have read is that this is an occasion in the poem where Dante is showing how adept he is at writing even comic poetry. We know that Dante, before he was exiled, was part of a community of poets, and they would write sonnets to each other to out due one another. There were some very bawdy or scatological.

We know, as writers, that we’re always in competition with each other, and we’re always talking back and forth with each other, as members of the shared community. I feel like that’s what he’s doing sometimes. He’s showing how funny he can be, how he can incorporate these kinds of behaviors in the poem. There are other parts that are very elevated, very beautiful, very touching. The poem is very poignant. The thing the poem most reminds me of is a novel. It has this narrative arch that’s rather continuous. It has very well developed characters. All I’m doing is letting those characters speak in our language, but they’re saying exactly what Dante had them say.

I have been very accurate. I have been very close. When I’ve indulged, I’ve even captured, and I hope sometimes better captured, the poem than a translation that is closer to the original. Some people go so far as to keep the Italian word order, which is not English word order. When you’re reading that translation, you’re having to switch things around in your mind. You’re having to drop the register of the poem. There’s a lot of work that interferes with the narrative arch, which interferes with the sense of terror, the sense of sadness, the sense of humor. All of these things undercut the emotional arch of the poem, and the dramatic arch of the poem.

What I’ve done is not to just have a good time at the expense of Dante, but to make a Dante that works like the original poem worked in his time. The funny thing is, I was most worried about the Italians, how they would see this. I was worried that they would think that it was an act of cultural imperialism, so that we’re even going to take Dante, and make him an American. It hasn’t been that way. All of the Italians I’ve talked to have really enjoyed the poem, and have sometimes said that I did get it, at any given place, closer to the original.

I was interviewed by a journalist who said that he had to read the poem in school, as a schoolboy, and hated it. He had read my translation while using an iPod, and listening to the original, and he said that finally the poem opened up, and now he understood the poem in a new way. I was so grateful for that. That’s exactly what I wanted to do. I wanted people who had never read the poem to read it, or those who had been frightened by it to be able to read it in a way that was non-threatening, that didn’t seem that was so elevated. It didn’t seem so difficult. It’s not a difficult poem. Dante never wanted it to be difficult to read.

MB: The book definitely has Mary Jo Bang’s signature written all over it. When I think one thinks of you, one thinks of the sonnet-induced surrealist flourishes from maybe Louise in Love or maybe [downton?] extremity the Isle of swans and having fun with those flourishes. In translating this, it feels like a different lyric, this sense of continuity is different. The unit of gestures is different. The lyric is more open. In translating this, was it hard to behave yourself? Did you slip into this method mode easily, or how was that?

MJB: That’s a really interesting question. Behave myself? I think when I started I was misbehaving. I was very indulgent. After I did the first Canto, I found myself in a situation where I had an unabridged English/Italian dictionary, and I became much more restrained because I fell in love with accuracy. I wanted it to be accurate. I wanted those flourishes all to be in the service of accuracy, and that changed everything. What’s interesting to me also is that when people talk about my work, they go back to earlier works. That’s fair, of course, but as a poet one changes over time. Even when I look back at Louise in Love, for instance, which has this highly worked rhetorical surface. A lot of alliteration. A lot of sonnet playfulness. That seems like a long, long time ago.

What I’m doing now, often what I’m asked now, on whether I think working on the Inferno changed my own poems… At first I said, “I don’t know.” And then, as I worked more, years on it, I realized that it had but only because the brain is plastic. Anything you do for six years, you have to be changed by it. Just on a physical level, those synapses have information in them that it didn’t have before. You would be changed, in particular when that’s language-based work. Your language will be changed.

Recently, I brought together all the poems I’d been writing for these last years; I began to see how it had changed. I think that there’s much more of a direct, I think I’ve let go of all kinds of sound patterning… But I think that I’m much more invested in making what I want to say clear. I think that sometimes a highly worked rhetorical surface can interfere with that. People in the past have sometimes have said, “Oh, she’s only doing this for the sound.” I was never only doing anything for sound. That would be nonsense rhymes, or something, or just music without words.

Now I think I’m trying to be more clear. I think you have to be more inventive in some ways. I think that that was a default, a go to kind of place, to mess with the syntax, and to layer all this sound. If I strip that away, but I don’t want the language to be flat, now I have to find new ways of being inventive. That’s what I think I’ve been working on.

MB: If I can ask maybe a related question: How has this project changed how you read works in translation, or how you encounter books that have a translator?

MJB: I am very sensitive now to word choices. I think that I was somewhat before, but certainly this has made me so much more interested in those choices. I remember, recently, I was reading some work by a Turkish poet, a contemporary Turkish poet, and the translator had used one word that I thought, “I don’t think the translator know how we’re going to read that.” Yes, it is a substitute for whatever we had in the original, and I can’t read the original Turkish. It seemed like an antiquated word. Everything about that poet’s work was highly contemporary, and highly inventive. It’s stunning. But that word was an anachronistic word. Something like that where you find yourself wanting to take an eraser and put your own solution to that, so…

I don’t know if that would have happened before, it’s possible that it could have, but now I think I’m highly attuned to wanting things to be where you don’t notice the translation, you just feel like you’re reading something in whatever language you’re reading. Yes, you know it’s a translation, but you don’t want to know that on the level of the word. You don’t want to suddenly be brought out of that trance, that suspension of disbelief.

MB: I know you said that when you started working on the project, you had gotten a residency in Italy, and you had encountered, while you were working on it, some conservative resistance to what people perceived you were doing. Have you met any of that resistance now that the book is done, and that it’s out in the world?

MJB: There has been one review of the book, but only one, that was completely dismissive of the entire project. I think that I feel good about the fact that there was only one, because I think I have opened myself up to people who don’t want to be distracted, in that same way that I was talking about a word can sometimes distract from a translation. What I have done clearly could be seen as distracting from the original. If you’re invested in the original, you respect it, you are familiar with it; you could have the response to say, “Oh no, you’re distracting me with this and that’s unfair. I loved the poem as it was.” In that case, my translation is not for you.

I think that more often, I’ve had translators say, “This is really exciting, but right here in this small spot, I was distracted.” Or, “Sometimes she goes too far.” Here, I’ll give you an example of that. I’m consoled by that level of respect. I know that I can’t please everyone. If I had done just a straight translation, the poem wouldn’t be appealing to some people. These were the very people that I was trying to reach, who would never read this poem otherwise. I wanted to make it readable. I wanted to make it interesting, and also for people who knew the poem, to see what substitutions I had made, and they might enjoy examining how I had done that.

Within any translation, a set of translations, there are these moments where one person goes in one direction and another person goes in another direction, and if you know many of these translations by now… I know 20 translations, some of those very, very well. I’d say six of them I know very well. I know how most of those treated any particular phrase. I know what I had treated it as. Those people who know the translation, many of them will be interested in the so-called liberties I’ve taken. They’ll interrogate those on the level of translation, and hopefully that will be satisfying.

There is no way to make a translation everyone will, one, read, and two, enjoy. I knew that what I was doing would alienate a few people. I think that I’ve always known that about poetry in general. My own work wouldn’t be accepted by everyone, and that that was okay. One finds readers who like what you’re doing, or who are curious about what you’re doing, and will read more by you as a way of understanding why you’re making the aesthetic choices that you’re making. That’s all one can ask for, that kind of respect, in terms of being curious about why one does something.

MB: I’ve heard you mention… There were just various fields in which you could not meet Dante. For instance, we don’t live in medieval times. You’re not an Italian. You’re not a Catholic. But the field you could meet him on was that you’re a poet. You’re both poets. Can you describe how you encounter Dante as a fellow poet?

MJB: Many things. One is how do you get someone to read you? How do you, and again, I go back to how hard it is to get people to read poetry… so I think sometimes, for instance, I describe that scene with the tar pit devils… It’s very comic; it’s vaudevillian, [high burlesque?]. He may have done that partly also, to draw people in, that people would hear about that scene and be curious, go and get the work, and go to that, look and talk about it.

As artists, and this is true of every art, part of what you’re doing, you’re not just indulging some kind of impulse to make art, which is ultimately what one’s doing. If you want to share that, you’re going to have to give someone grounds for being curious enough to devote their time, and all the more now than before, when we’re so busy. Contemporary life is so demanding, and so fragmented. How do you get people’s attention? Part of that is, and this is going to sound really reductive, but you write well. And what that means to write well is undefined, but you keep trying to find ways to interest people on the level of language. You keep trying to present characters that someone will want to read about.

The Tharanaye, [people?] in general in the epicurean cemetery, the cemetery of the heretics, is so arrogant, and he asks Dante, “Who are your people?” in Florence, because he was also from Florence. Dante tells him, and he tells him, “Oh yes, well those were my people’s enemy, and because of that, more than once I sent them scattering.” Dante says, “Well, that’s true, Sir.” He’s very, very polite to Tharanaye and he says, “That’s true but the fact is, that my people came back, and then they sent your people away.” Tharanaye is very agitated at this and says, “That upsets me more than lying in this bed, which is a coffin full of fire.”

He’s got these little conversations, and it’s like reality TV. You’re mesmerized by this back and forth, this human behavior. I felt like I have to do that, as a poet, I have to bring everything to bare, in terms of how do you get people to read. What kind of language do you create? How do you create a character out of language?

There’s a psychology by which all of us, as people, are created. The novelist’s job, and here, the narrative poet’s job, is to infuse that character with some kind of humanity so that they are conjured. They spring to life right before your eyes, and it’s only through your eyes meeting text on a page. It’s not the same as film, where somebody presents themselves to us and we go, “Oh yes, that character; I know that character.”

Now, all you have are these scratchings of ink on white paper, and you have to conjure that three-dimensional character. I think those are the kinds of things that I met Dante on the playing field, and tried to really make a pact with him, almost a dialogue… How do you want me to do this? What’s Tharanaye like? Can I make him seem that way to a contemporary reader?

MB: Well, thanks so much for being on the show, Mary.

MJB: Thank you! It’s been a real pleasure.

MB: You’ve been listening to the Lit Show. This is KRUI.

 

 

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#90: Phillip Lopate http://www.litshow.com/089/phillip-lopate http://www.litshow.com/089/phillip-lopate#comments Mon, 09 Sep 2013 03:07:01 +0000 Gemma de Choisy http://www.litshow.com/?p=3656 Has the essay become ubiquitous? Nonfiction prose has enjoyed a series of booms since the memoir craze of the late 1980s. But now essays, and essayists – those sallying minds on the margins of the genre – have begun to find themselves in a new and near constant limelight. One writer at the fulcrum of the memoir’s heyday ...

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Has the essay become ubiquitous?

Nonfiction prose has enjoyed a series of booms since the memoir craze of the late 1980s. But now essays, and essayists – those sallying minds on the margins of the genre – have begun to find themselves in a new and near constant limelight. One writer at the fulcrum of the memoir’s heyday remains an ardent champion of the essay. Although we can’t credit him with the form’s invention, we can certainly thank him for its exposure, past and present. (Or, blame him, depending on your tastes.)

Phillip Lopate was born in Brooklyn in 1943. He began his literary career as a writer of fictions and poetry, but is best known for his deeply intimate nonfiction work. His prolific publication credits include Being with Children (Doubleday, 1975), a memoiristic account of the twelve years he spent teaching poetry in public schools, and his many personal essays, collected in Bachelorhood: Tales of the Metropolis (Little, Brown, 1981), Against Joie de Vivre (Simon & Schuster, 1989), and Portrait of My Body (Anchor, 1996) among others. He recently published To Show and To Tell: Notes on the Craft of Literary Nonfiction (Free Press, 2013), and Notes on Sontag (Princeton University Press, 2009) is an extended meditation on the late critic and cultural theorist.

Lopate also edited The Art of the Personal Essay (Doubleday, 1994), the widely-taught landmark anthology contextualizing the personal essay as a contemporarily relevant style, couched in a long-standing global tradition. The Art of The Personal Essay was an instant hit with writers and readers of nonfiction everywhere, and it remains the single bestselling anthology of essays these past thirty years have seen.

Given all this, it’s no surprise that Lopate is widely considered one of the most influential essayists living today. The recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship and two grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, he has taught in almost half a dozen MFA programs around the country, and currently holds the Adams Chair at Hofstra University, where he is a professor of English.

Phillip Lopate is visiting the University of Iowa this week as an Ida Beam Distinguished Visiting Professor and will be reading from his new critically acclaimed essay collection, Portrait Inside My Head (Free Press, 2013), on Thursday, September 12, 2013, at 7:00pm in 101 Biology Building East.

Complete Podcast

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http://www.litshow.com/089/phillip-lopate/feed/ 0 Has the essay become ubiquitous? - Nonfiction prose has enjoyed a series of booms since the memoir craze of the late 1980s. But now essays, and essayists - those sallying minds on the margins of the genre - have begun to find themselves in a new and n... Phillip Lopate discusses new work, including PORTRAIT INSIDE MY HEAD, with Gemma de Choisy. The Lit Show no 49:01
#89: Natalie Brown http://www.litshow.com/088/natalie-brown http://www.litshow.com/088/natalie-brown#comments Mon, 09 Sep 2013 00:16:50 +0000 Gemma de Choisy http://www.litshow.com/?p=3627 In her debut novel, The Lovebird, author Natalie Brown introduces us to Margie Fitzgerald, a spirited heroine with a bleeding heart, a twinge in her left ovary, and a Titanic capacity for sympathy. The novel takes us from Southern California’s orange-scented streets to Montana’s vast prairies, tracking Margie’s love affair with Simon Mellinkoff, her charming, ...

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Natalie Brown: The Lovebird

In her debut novel, The Lovebird, author Natalie Brown introduces us to Margie Fitzgerald, a spirited heroine with a bleeding heart, a twinge in her left ovary, and a Titanic capacity for sympathy. The novel takes us from Southern California’s orange-scented streets to Montana’s vast prairies, tracking Margie’s love affair with Simon Mellinkoff, her charming, but clearly troubled, professor. “Margie has always had a soft spot for helpless creatures,” Brown explains, and as she embarks on an unconventional love affair, Simon, a Latin-scholar-cum-animal-rights-activist, folds Margie into his coterie of like-minded ragtag renegades.

“Brown get[s] readers empathizing with [Margie] as well as caught up in her passion,” says Publishers Weekly.  Readers watch as Margie’s newfound activism and its consequences force her to flee to Montana and the safety of the Crow Indian Reservation, leaving behind her fragile father and her life in California. Once in Montana, against the back drop of endless Big Country sky, she meets a cast of characters as varied and guiding as Chaucer’s pilgrims. It is there that Margie also meets the once person she most wants to know and understand: herself.

Suffused with humor, The Lovebird is a novel about one young woman’s love of animals, yearning for connection, and search for her place in this world. “In vibrant, colorful language that leaps off the page, Brown paints her winsome heroine’s coming-of-age with compassion and affection in this lush, compelling tale,” says one Booklist review.

Raised in Orange County, California, Natalie Brown earned a BA in Literature at UC San Diego, and MA degrees in both English and Native American Studies at Montana State University. She lives in Bozeman, Montana.

Complete Podcast

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http://www.litshow.com/088/natalie-brown/feed/ 0 fiction,gemma de choisy,natalie brown In her debut novel, The Lovebird, author Natalie Brown introduces us to Margie Fitzgerald, a spirited heroine with a bleeding heart, a twinge in her left ovary, and a Titanic capacity for sympathy. The novel takes us from Southern California’s orange-s... Author Natalie Brown discusses her novel The Lovebird in an interview with Gemma de Choisy. The Lit Show no 48:36
#88: Geoffrey G. O’Brien http://www.litshow.com/088/geoffrey-g-obrien http://www.litshow.com/088/geoffrey-g-obrien#comments Sun, 08 Sep 2013 17:10:58 +0000 Alex Walton http://www.litshow.com/?p=3670 Geoffrey G. O' Brien, author of People on Sunday, discusses work and leisure, vague diction and active reading, and San Quentin Prison writers. Interview by Alex Walton.

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Geoffrey G. O'Brien: The Lit Show InterviewAlex Walton interviewed Geoffrey G. O Brien at 4 PM CST on Monday, September 9th, 2013.

Complete Podcast

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http://www.litshow.com/088/geoffrey-g-obrien/feed/ 0 Geoffrey G. O' Brien, author of People on Sunday, discusses work and leisure, vague diction and active reading, and San Quentin Prison writers. Interview by Alex Walton. A discussion with poet Geoffrey G. O'Brien, author of People on Sunday. Interview by Alex Walton. The Lit Show no 33:20
#87: Bennett Sims http://www.litshow.com/087/bennett-sims http://www.litshow.com/087/bennett-sims#comments Mon, 06 May 2013 15:28:19 +0000 Ben Mauk http://www.litshow.com/?p=3564 On this Lit Show, Bennett Sims discusses his debut novel, A Questionable Shape. Wells Tower writes: “Bennett Sims is a writer fearsomely equipped with an intellectual and linguistic range to rival a young Nabokov's, Nicholson Baker's gift for miniaturistic intaglio, and an arsenal of virtuosities entirely his own. A Questionable Shape announces a literary talent of genre-wrecking brilliance.”

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Bennett Sims Interview: The Lit ShowOn this Lit Show, Bennett Sims discusses his debut novel, A Questionable Shape.

Set in the aftermath of a zombie outbreak in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, A Questionable Shape rejects the splatter and kitsch of typical genre fare in favor of meditations on the nature of consciousness and loss. It’s a zombie novel where the zombies appear only at a distance and pose little danger to Mazoch and Vermaelen, two friends who drive around the city every day, searching for an undead father and waiting for the coming hurricane to hit. With nods to Hamlet and Orpheus (not to mention Tarkovsky and Wittgenstein), Sims’s novel is a learned debut informed not just by erudition, but by nature, desire, and the persistence of memory.

Wells Tower writes: “Bennett Sims is a writer fearsomely equipped with an intellectual and linguistic range to rival a young Nabokov’s, Nicholson Baker’s gift for miniaturistic intaglio, and an arsenal of virtuosities entirely his own. A Questionable Shape announces a literary talent of genre-wrecking brilliance.”

Sims’s fiction has appeared in A Public Space, Tin House, and Zoetrope: All-Story. A graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, he currently teaches at the University of Iowa, where he is the Provost Postgraduate Visiting Writer in fiction.

Complete Episode

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http://www.litshow.com/087/bennett-sims/feed/ 0 a questionable shape,bennett sims,fiction,iowa writers' workshop,wells tower,zombies On this Lit Show, Bennett Sims discusses his debut novel, A Questionable Shape. Wells Tower writes: “Bennett Sims is a writer fearsomely equipped with an intellectual and linguistic range to rival a young Nabokov's, (http://www.litshow.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/cover_sims1-201x300.jpg)On this Lit Show, Bennett Sims discusses his debut novel, A Questionable Shape. Set in the aftermath of a zombie outbreak in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, A Questionable Shape rejects the splatter and kitsch of typical genre fare in favor of meditations on the nature of consciousness and loss. It’s a zombie novel where the zombies appear only at a distance and pose little danger to Mazoch and Vermaelen, two friends who drive around the city every day, searching for an undead father and waiting for the coming hurricane to hit. With nods to Hamlet and Orpheus (not to mention Tarkovsky and Wittgenstein), Sims’s novel is a learned debut informed not just by erudition, but by nature, desire, and the persistence of memory. Wells Tower writes: “Bennett Sims is a writer fearsomely equipped with an intellectual and linguistic range to rival a young Nabokov's, Nicholson Baker's gift for miniaturistic intaglio, and an arsenal of virtuosities entirely his own. A Questionable Shape announces a literary talent of genre-wrecking brilliance.” Sims’s fiction has appeared in A Public Space, Tin House, and Zoetrope: All-Story. A graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, he currently teaches at the University of Iowa, where he is the Provost Postgraduate Visiting Writer in fiction. Complete Episode The Lit Show no 42:35
#86: R. Clifton Spargo http://www.litshow.com/086/r-clifton-spargo http://www.litshow.com/086/r-clifton-spargo#comments Mon, 06 May 2013 14:20:33 +0000 Deborah Kennedy http://www.litshow.com/?p=3549 On this episode of the Lit Show Deborah Kennedy speaks to R. Clifton Spargo, an Arts Fellow and MFA candidate in fiction at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, about his debut novel Beautiful Fools: The Last Affair of Zelda and Scott Fitzgerald. Spargo’s stories have appeared in the Antioch Review, FICTION, Glimmer Train, SOMA, and the ...

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R. Clifton Spargo interview: The Lit ShowOn this episode of the Lit Show Deborah Kennedy speaks to R. Clifton Spargo, an Arts Fellow and MFA candidate in fiction at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, about his debut novel Beautiful Fools: The Last Affair of Zelda and Scott Fitzgerald.

Spargo’s stories have appeared in the Antioch Review, FICTION, Glimmer Train, SOMA, and the Kenyon Review, among others. He’s also published essays on literature, culture, and rock music in Raritan, Commonweal, the Yale Review and the Chicago Tribune. He currently writes a blog, The HI/LO, on the interplay between high and low cultures for HuffingtonPost.

In Beautiful Fools, Spargo delves deeply into the final moments of one of America’s most storied couples as they take a last trip together to Cuba in 1939. At this pivotal time in world history, Scott and Zelda are experiencing internal wars of their own and what begins as a vacation ends.

Tom Perrotta calls Beautiful Fools “a vivid and revealing look at two charismatic, self-destructive people, and the love that sustained and ruined them . . . It’s a real feat of historical imagination and novelistic empathy.”

Excerpts

Complete Episode

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http://www.litshow.com/086/r-clifton-spargo/feed/ 0 On this episode of the Lit Show Deborah Kennedy speaks to R. Clifton Spargo, an Arts Fellow and MFA candidate in fiction at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, about his debut novel Beautiful Fools: The Last Affair of Zelda and Scott Fitzgerald. - On this episode, Deborah Kennedy interviews R. Clifton Spargo, author of Beautiful Fools: The Last Affair of Zelda and Scott Fitzgerald. The book delves deeply into the final moments of one of America’s most storied couples as they take a last trip together to Cuba in 1939. At this pivotal time in world history, Scott and Zelda are experiencing internal wars of their own and what begins as a vacation ends. The Lit Show no 57:51
#85: Lucas Mann http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/lucas-mann http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/lucas-mann#comments Wed, 17 Apr 2013 15:43:33 +0000 Ben Mauk http://www.litshow.com/?p=3527 Stepping up to the plate on this episode of The Lit Show is Lucas Mann with his acclaimed debut, Class A: Baseball in the Middle of Everywhere. Mann’s book chronicles a year in the life of a minor league baseball team in Clinton, Iowa. Beyond the lives of the LumberKings themselves, Mann investigates the dedicated ...

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The Lit Show interview with Lucas MannStepping up to the plate on this episode of The Lit Show is Lucas Mann with his acclaimed debut, Class A: Baseball in the Middle of Everywhere.

Mann’s book chronicles a year in the life of a minor league baseball team in Clinton, Iowa. Beyond the lives of the LumberKings themselves, Mann investigates the dedicated fans, family members, radio announcer, mascot, and the town itself as seen through the eyes of a transplant who keeps finding himself drawn back to the game, whether at Yankee Stadium or in Clinton’s Depression-era field by the Mississippi River.

David Shields writes: “[Mann’s] book is an impressively unblinking meditation on private and public failure,” and John Beckman compares him to Joan Didion or Gay Talese. Mann was born in New York City and received his MFA from the University of Iowa, where he is currently the Provost’s Visiting Writer in Nonfiction.

Interview by Ben Mauk.

Excerpt

Complete Episode

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http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/lucas-mann/feed/ 0 Stepping up to the plate on this episode of The Lit Show is Lucas Mann with his acclaimed debut, Class A: Baseball in the Middle of Everywhere. - Mann’s book chronicles a year in the life of a minor league baseball team in Clinton, Iowa. Stepping up to the plate on this episode of The Lit Show is Lucas Mann with his acclaimed debut, Class A: Baseball in the Middle of Everywhere. Mann’s book chronicles a year in the life of a minor league baseball team in Clinton, Iowa. Beyond the lives of the LumberKings themselves, Mann investigates the dedicated fans, family members, radio announcer, mascot, and the town itself as seen through the eyes of a transplant who keeps finding himself drawn back to the game, whether at Yankee Stadium or in Clinton’s Depression-era field by the Mississippi River. The Lit Show no 48:22
Lit Show Programming: Week of 4/9/2013 http://www.litshow.com/2013/04/08/program-podcast/ http://www.litshow.com/2013/04/08/program-podcast/#comments Mon, 08 Apr 2013 16:25:34 +0000 admin http://www.litshow.com/?p=3471 This week, we'll speak with a Pulitzer Prize-winning story writer and novelist, Elizabeth Strout, and an acclaimed writer of essays and journalism, Vivian Gornick.

Listen in:

Vivian Gornick | Monday, April 8th at 3 PM CST
Elizabeth Strout | Tuesday, April 9th at 3 PM CST

Meanwhile, two new episodes are available through our podcast.

Our interview with Mary Jo Bang, whose new translation of Dante—simply called Inferno—is inventive and audaciously modern.
Our interview with Roxane Gay, essayist and literary web personality, on the Internet, feminism, and losing at Scrabble.

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This week, we’ll speak with a Pulitzer Prize-winning story writer and novelist, Elizabeth Strout, and an acclaimed writer of essays and journalism, Vivian Gornick.

Listen in:

Vivian Gornick | Monday, April 8th at 3 PM CST
Elizabeth Strout | Tuesday, April 9th at 3 PM CST

Meanwhile, two new episodes are available through our podcast.

Our interview with Mary Jo Bang, whose new translation of Dante—simply called Inferno—is inventive and audaciously modern.

Our interview with Roxane Gay, essayist and literary web personality, on the Internet, feminism, and losing at Scrabble.

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#84: Elizabeth Strout http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/elizabeth-strout http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/elizabeth-strout#comments Mon, 08 Apr 2013 16:12:27 +0000 Elizabeth Weiss http://www.litshow.com/?p=3465 Elizabeth Strout is the author of the novels Amy and Isabelle and Abide with Me, the short-story collection Olive Kitteridge, and the forthcoming novel The Burgess Boys. Her education includes degrees in English and law as well as a class in stand-up comedy, which she undertook as a response to writer’s block. She lives in Maine and New York City and teaches in the low-residency MFA program at Queens University in Charlotte, North Carolina.

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Elizabeth Strout Interview | The Lit ShowElizabeth Strout is the author of the novels Amy and Isabelle and Abide with Me, the short-story collection Olive Kitteridge, and the forthcoming novel The Burgess Boys. Her education includes degrees in English and law as well as a class in stand-up comedy, which she undertook as a response to writer’s block. She lives in Maine and New York City and teaches in the low-residency MFA program at Queens University in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Olive Kitteridge won the 2009 Pulitzer Prize for fiction; The New Yorker wrote in its review that Strout “animates the ordinary with an astonishing force.”

Listen Live: Tuesday, April 9th at 3 PM CST

Complete Episode

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http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/elizabeth-strout/feed/ 0 elizabeth strouth,fiction,olive kitteridge,susannah shive Elizabeth Strout is the author of the novels Amy and Isabelle and Abide with Me, the short-story collection Olive Kitteridge, and the forthcoming novel The Burgess Boys. Her education includes degrees in English and law as well as a class in stand-up c... On this Lit Show, Susannah Shive interviews award-winning author Elizabeth Strout. Strout is the author of the novels Amy and Isabelle and Abide with Me, the short-story collection Olive Kitteridge, and the forthcoming novel The Burgess Boys. Her education includes degrees in English and law as well as a class in stand-up comedy, which she undertook as a response to writer’s block. She lives in Maine and New York City and teaches in the low-residency MFA program at Queens University in Charlotte, North Carolina. Olive Kitteridge won the 2009 Pulitzer Prize for fiction; The New Yorker wrote in its review that Strout “animates the ordinary with an astonishing force.” The Lit Show no 29:14
#83: Vivian Gornick http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/vivian-gornick http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/vivian-gornick#comments Mon, 08 Apr 2013 16:04:47 +0000 Gemma de Choisy http://www.litshow.com/?p=3458 On this Lit Show, Gemma de Choisy speaks with essayist Vivian Gornick. Unparalleled in her unflinching candidness, Vivian Gornick renders the political as personal and shows the self to be a mirror of the culture that made it. “Gornick is fearless,” Elizabeth Frank writes in The New York Times Book Review. “Reading her essays, one is reassured that the conversation between life and literature is mutually sustaining as well as mutually corrective.” Best known for her acclaimed 1987 memoir, Fierce Attachments, and her work with The Village Voice, Gornick is also a frequent contributor to The Nation, The Atlantic, and The New York Times. She is the author of more than a dozen other books and essay collections, including The End of the Novel of Love, Essays in Feminism, and The Men in My Life, a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award.

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Vivian Gornick interview on The Lit Show

Unparalleled in her unflinching candidness, Vivian Gornick renders the political as personal and shows the self to be a mirror of the culture that made it. “Gornick is fearless,” Elizabeth Frank writes in The New York Times Book Review. “Reading her essays, one is reassured that the conversation between life and literature is mutually sustaining as well as mutually corrective.”

Best known for her acclaimed 1987 memoir, Fierce Attachments, and her work with The Village Voice, Gornick is also a frequent contributor to The Nation, The Atlantic, and The New York Times. She is the author of more than a dozen other books and essay collections, including The End of the Novel of Love, Essays in Feminism, and The Men in My Life, a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award.

Gornick teaches creative writing at The New School in New York, NY. Her most recent book, Emma Goldman: Revolution as a Way of Life, is out now from Yale University Press, and her essay “Letter from Greenwich Village” can be found in the 60th anniversary issue of The Paris Review (Spring, 2013).

Gornick will be reading from a selection of her work at Prairie Lights in Iowa City on Monday, April 8, at 8:00pm.

Complete episode

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http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/vivian-gornick/feed/ 0 On this Lit Show, Gemma de Choisy speaks with essayist Vivian Gornick. Unparalleled in her unflinching candidness, Vivian Gornick renders the political as personal and shows the self to be a mirror of the culture that made it. “Gornick is fearless, (http://www.litshow.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/gornick_index_745.jpg) Unparalleled in her unflinching candidness, Vivian Gornick renders the political as personal and shows the self to be a mirror of the culture that made it. “Gornick is fearless,” Elizabeth Frank writes in The New York Times Book Review. “Reading her essays, one is reassured that the conversation between life and literature is mutually sustaining as well as mutually corrective.” Best known for her acclaimed 1987 memoir, Fierce Attachments, and her work with The Village Voice, Gornick is also a frequent contributor to The Nation, The Atlantic, and The New York Times. She is the author of more than a dozen other books and essay collections, including The End of the Novel of Love, Essays in Feminism, and The Men in My Life, a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award. Gornick teaches creative writing at The New School in New York, NY. Her most recent book, Emma Goldman: Revolution as a Way of Life, is out now from Yale University Press, and her essay “Letter from Greenwich Village” can be found in the 60th anniversary issue of The Paris Review (Spring, 2013). Gornick will be reading from a selection of her work at Prairie Lights in Iowa City on Monday, April 8, at 8:00pm. Complete episode The Lit Show no 59:46
#82: Mary Jo Bang http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/mary-jo-bang http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/mary-jo-bang#comments Fri, 05 Apr 2013 16:35:36 +0000 Micah Bateman http://www.litshow.com/?p=3421 On this Lit Show, Mary Jo Bang discusses her new book, an irreverent translation of Dante's Inferno, aptly titled Inferno. Mary Jo Bang is the author of several books of poetry, including Elegy, for which she won the National Book Critics Circle Award in 2007. Her most recent book is an audacious, pop-culture-laden, interpretive translation of Dante's Inferno, which is being heralded by critics like Adam Fitzgerald of The Brooklyn Rail: "Though no Italian scholar proper, Bang is, however, one of the most wonderfully disturbing and haunted poets of our time...she has attempted to rethink, relive, and re-envision a 21st century Inferno." Bang is currently a Professor of English at Washington University in St. Louis.

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Mary Jo Bang interview, Inferno: The Lit Show
On this Lit Show, Mary Jo Bang discusses her new book, an irreverent translation of Dante’s Inferno, aptly titled Inferno.

Mary Jo Bang is the author of several books of poetry, including Elegy, for which she won the National Book Critics Circle Award in 2007. Her most recent book is an audacious, pop-culture-laden, interpretive translation of Dante’s Inferno, which is being heralded by critics like Adam Fitzgerald of The Brooklyn Rail: “Though no Italian scholar proper, Bang is, however, one of the most wonderfully disturbing and haunted poets of our time…she has attempted to rethink, relive, and re-envision a 21st century Inferno.” Bang is currently a Professor of English at Washington University in St. Louis.

Interview by Micah Bateman. Complete audio transcript.

Excerpts

Complete Episode

 

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http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/mary-jo-bang/feed/ 0 dante,mary jo bang,petri press,poetry,translation On this Lit Show, Mary Jo Bang discusses her new book, an irreverent translation of Dante's Inferno, aptly titled Inferno. - Mary Jo Bang is the author of several books of poetry, including Elegy, for which she won the National Book Critics Circle Awa... (http://www.litshow.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/mjb_index_745.png) On this Lit Show, Mary Jo Bang discusses her new book, an irreverent translation of Dante's Inferno, aptly titled Inferno. Mary Jo Bang is the author of several books of poetry, including Elegy, for which she won the National Book Critics Circle Award in 2007. Her most recent book is an audacious, pop-culture-laden, interpretive translation of Dante's Inferno, which is being heralded by critics like Adam Fitzgerald of The Brooklyn Rail: "Though no Italian scholar proper, Bang is, however, one of the most wonderfully disturbing and haunted poets of our time...she has attempted to rethink, relive, and re-envision a 21st century Inferno." Bang is currently a Professor of English at Washington University in St. Louis. Interview by Micah Bateman. Complete audio transcript (http://www.litshow.com/2013/10/21/82-mary-jo-bang-interview-transcript/). Excerpts Complete Episode   The Lit Show no 57:03
#81: Roxane Gay http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/roxane-gay http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/roxane-gay#comments Tue, 02 Apr 2013 16:13:23 +0000 Ben Mauk http://www.litshow.com/?p=3383 On this Lit Show, Roxane Gay discusses her prolific body of work, the perils of frequent publication, and her two upcoming books: a novel, An Untamed State, and essay collection, Bad Feminist. It would be hard to keep up with the online literary world and not be constantly running into Gay’s byline. She is everywhere. Her heavily anthologized fiction and essays have appeared in VQR, American Short Fiction, McSweeney’s, Melville Housemud lusciousThe Indiana Review, and dozens of other venues. Her criticism appears in the New York Times and on the Wall Street Journal's website, where she reviews and live-blogs reality TV, including and especially ABC’s The Bachelor and The Bachelorette. She is a frequent contributor to HTMLGIANT, Salon, Bookslut, and The Rumpus, where she is the essays editor. She is also the co-editor of [PANK] Magazine.

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On this Lit Show, Roxane Gay discusses her prolific body of work, the perils of frequent publication, and her two upcoming books: a novel, An Untamed State, and essay collection, Bad Feminist.

It would be hard to keep up with the online literary world and not be constantly running into Gay’s byline. She is everywhere. Her heavily anthologized fiction and essays have appeared in VQR, American Short Fiction, McSweeney’s, Melville Housemud lusciousThe Indiana Review, and dozens of other venues. Her criticism appears in the New York Times and on the Wall Street Journal’s website, where she reviews and live-blogs reality TV, including and especially ABC’s The Bachelor and The Bachelorette. She is a frequent contributor to HTMLGIANT, Salon, Bookslut, and The Rumpus, where she is the essays editor. She is also the co-editor of [PANK] Magazine.

Gay’s works have earned her fourteen Pushcart nominations the last three years. She is, in other words, one of contemporary literature’s most prolific voices, and she is this year’s Writer-in-Residence at the Mission Creek Festival taking place from April 2 – April 7 in Iowa City. Unsurprisingly, she maintains an active online presence, tweeting here, and blogging on tumblr and on her website, I Have Become Accustomed to Rejection.

Interview by Ben Mauk.

Excerpt

Complete Episode

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http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/roxane-gay/feed/ 0 ben mauk,htmlgiant,interview,nonfiction,roxane gay,the rumpus On this Lit Show, Roxane Gay discusses her prolific body of work, the perils of frequent publication, and her two upcoming books: a novel, An Untamed State, and essay collection, Bad Feminist. - It would be hard to keep up with the online literary wor... (http://www.litshow.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/index_gay_7451.png) (http://www.litshow.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/index_gay_image.png) On this Lit Show, Roxane Gay discusses her prolific body of work, the perils of frequent publication, and her two upcoming books: a novel, An Untamed State, and essay collection, Bad Feminist. It would be hard to keep up with the online literary world and not be constantly running into Gay’s byline. She is everywhere. Her heavily anthologized fiction and essays have appeared in VQR, American Short Fiction, McSweeney’s, Melville House, mud luscious, The Indiana Review, and dozens of other venues. Her criticism appears in the New York Times and on the Wall Street Journal's website, where she reviews and live-blogs reality TV, including and especially ABC’s The Bachelor and The Bachelorette. She is a frequent contributor to HTMLGIANT, Salon, Bookslut, and The Rumpus, where she is the essays editor. She is also the co-editor of [PANK] Magazine. Gay’s works have earned her fourteen Pushcart nominations the last three years. She is, in other words, one of contemporary literature's most prolific voices, and she is this year’s Writer-in-Residence at the Mission Creek Festival taking place from April 2 - April 7 in Iowa City. Unsurprisingly, she maintains an active online presence, tweeting here (https://twitter.com/rgay), and blogging on tumblr (http://roxanegay.tumblr.com/) and on her website, I Have Become Accustomed to Rejection (http://www.roxanegay.com/). Interview by Ben Mauk. Excerpt Complete Episode The Lit Show no 48:03
http://www.litshow.com/2013/03/29/3279/ http://www.litshow.com/2013/03/29/3279/#comments Fri, 29 Mar 2013 18:06:15 +0000 admin http://www.litshow.com/?p=3279

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Russell Jaffe
Terry Tempest Williams
Lawrence Weschler

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The Lit Show Live: Daily Rituals http://www.litshow.com/live/daily-rituals http://www.litshow.com/live/daily-rituals#comments Fri, 29 Mar 2013 13:43:49 +0000 admin http://www.litshow.com/?p=3254 The Lit Show Live at Powerhouse Books | Heidi Julavits, Sam Lipsyte, Ben GreenmanThe Lit Show presents Daily Rituals, an evening of reading and discussion at powerHouse Arena. Guests Ben Greenman, Heidi Julavits, and Sam Lipsyte read from their work and take part in conversation moderated by Mason Currey and Lit Show host Joe Fassler.

Currey’s book, Daily Rituals (Alfred A. Knopf), collects insights and anecdotes about writers’ daily work–and the workaday reality of writers will be our conversation topic. It’s easy to become smitten with rosy notions of the creative process: the artist alone at a battered desk, composing in epiphanic fits. But inspiration, as most working artists can testify, is trickier and more elusive than romantic narratives suggest. (“Blank pages inspire me with terror,” said no less a writer than Margaret Atwood.)

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On April 26th The Lit Show will host Daily Rituals, an evening of reading and discussion, at powerHouse Arena in Brooklyn. Guests Ben Greenman, Heidi Julavits, and Sam Lipsyte read from their work and take part in conversation moderated by Mason Currey and Lit Show host Joe Fassler.

Currey’s book, Daily Rituals (Alfred A. Knopf), collects insights and anecdotes about writers’ daily work–and the workaday reality of writers will be our conversation topic. It’s easy to become smitten with rosy notions of the creative process: the artist alone at a battered desk, composing in epiphanic fits. But inspiration, as most working artists can testify, is trickier and more elusive than romantic narratives suggest. (“Blank pages inspire me with terror,” said no less a writer than Margaret Atwood.)

What habits, large and small, help writers overcome creative fear and continue working–day after day, year by year? How to forge a relationship with words that lasts and sustains a lifetime?

This event is free and open to the public, complimentary beverages will be served, and a signing will follow. Audio and video recording by Yellow Hook Productions. Artwork by Sean Ford of Only Skin Comics.

The Lit Show + powerHouse Arena present Daily Rituals
Friday, April 26th at 6 PM
Readings by Ben Greenman, Heidi Julavits, Sam Lipsyte, and Mason Currey
Conversation moderated by Joe Fassler and Mason Currey
37 Main Street, Brooklyn NY

RSVP

CONTRIBUTORS

Ben Greenman‘s new novel is The Slippage. He’s an editor at The New Yorker and the author of several acclaimed books of fiction, including Superbad, Superworse, and A Circle is a Balloon and Compass Both: Stories About Human Love.

Heidi Julavits‘ most recent novel is The Vanishers. A founding editor of The Believer magazine, she is also the author of The Uses of Enchantment, The Effect of Living Backwards, and The Mineral Palace.

Sam Lipsyte is the author of collections The Fun Parts and Venus Drive, as well as three novels: The Ask, The Subject Steve and Home Land. He teaches writing at Columbia University.

Mason Currey is author of Daily Rituals: How Artists Work. He blogs at dailyroutines.typepad.com.

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Interview with Becky Tuch, editor of The Review Review http://www.litshow.com/archive/q-a/becky-tuch-review-review-interview http://www.litshow.com/archive/q-a/becky-tuch-review-review-interview#comments Thu, 28 Mar 2013 02:13:51 +0000 Joe Fassler http://www.litshow.com/?p=3169 Ask a magazine editor what they're looking for in submissions, and they'll likely give a simple response: read what we publish. You should still do that, but you might consider supplementing with something else, too—The Review Review, a literary magazine that reviews, well, other literary magazines.

The project was created by Becky Tuch, who wanted to create a resource that would help writers stay on top of the vast and always-changing world of journal publishing. "With over 600 print and online journals," she says in her site's mission statement, "it can be hard to know where to begin." But the Review Review does writers an invaluable service by sifting through the monthly glut of lit mags, praising the best and decrying the worst.

Individual journal issues are reviewed like books or albums, and the selection and presentation are evaluated closely before the whole production's assigned a grade. Reading through, it's easy to get a sense of who's publishing what each month or quarter, what kind of job they're doing, and whether you might want to read, buy, or submit work. Especially illuminating are The Review Review's interviews with editors, which tend go beyond the stern advice "Just read us."

Your decision to start a site that reviews literary magazines, paradoxically, grew out of a frustration with the world of literary magazines. How would you describe what you were feeling in 2008, before you founded The Review Review?

Overwhelmed! I felt that there was just this forest of literature and I had no way of navigating through it. But also, I was curious. I really wanted to know what was so great and important about these journals. I was hungry for everything that was inside of them. So my interest in reading them was partly frustration, and partly just real desire to explore them.

At the time, I was also thinking of going back to school to get an MA in Literature. So I was hungry not just to be reading more, but to be thinking about and discussing literature in a critical and focused way. As a writer, you read so much and get inspired in so many different ways, and often you feel like, “Hey. I just read this amazing scene. Who can I talk to about it?”

So all these needs fused in my mind at once (in the midst of waiting tables!) and I realized I wanted to start a site where I could provide much-needed information for writers while also satisfying my own intellectual cravings.

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Ask a magazine editor what they’re looking for in submissions, and they’ll likely give a simple response: read what we publish. You should still do that, but you might consider supplementing with something else, too—The Review Review, a literary magazine that reviews, well, other literary magazines.

The project was created by Becky Tuch, who wanted to create a resource that would help writers stay on top of the vast and always-changing world of journal publishing. “With over 600 print and online journals,” she says in her site’s mission statement, “it can be hard to know where to begin.” But the Review Review does writers an invaluable service by sifting through the monthly glut of lit mags, praising the best and decrying the worst.

Individual journal issues are reviewed like books or albums, and the selection and presentation are evaluated closely before the whole production’s assigned a grade. Reading through, it’s easy to get a sense of who’s publishing what each month or quarter, what kind of job they’re doing, and whether you might want to read, buy, or submit work. Especially illuminating are The Review Review’s interviews with editors, which tend go beyond the stern advice “Just read us.”

Becky Tuch and I spoke by email.


Your decision to start a site that reviews literary magazines, paradoxically, grew out of a frustration with the world of literary magazines. How would you describe what you were feeling in 2008, before you founded The Review Review?

Overwhelmed! I felt that there was just this forest of literature and I had no way of navigating through it. But also, I was curious. I really wanted to know what was so great and important about these journals. I was hungry for everything that was inside of them. So my interest in reading them was partly frustration, and partly just real desire to explore them.

At the time, I was also thinking of going back to school to get an MA in Literature. So I was hungry not just to be reading more, but to be thinking about and discussing literature in a critical and focused way. As a writer, you read so much and get inspired in so many different ways, and often you feel like, “Hey. I just read this amazing scene. Who can I talk to about it?”

So all these needs fused in my mind at once (in the midst of waiting tables!) and I realized I wanted to start a site where I could provide much-needed information for writers while also satisfying my own intellectual cravings.

How did that analysis of the literary magazine scene grow into The Review Review? How would you describe your vision for the project?

If I had to summarize my vision in two words, it would be: Full Disclosure. I want writers to have as much information as possible about literary magazines. Which ones are well-edited, which are full of typos, which are beautiful, which are politically offensive, which are inspiring, and so on. Knowing which journals specialize in what can save writers a lot of time and money. Also, to be constantly on the submitting-and-being-judged side of things can get wearisome. Having more knowledge about a variety of lit mags is a way writers can feel empowered.

In addition to that, I want to give editors a voice. “Stop sending us romance! We don’t publish romance!” or “Please trust us. We really do want you to succeed!” These are things editors are hungry to tell writers. So, I think of The Review Review as a place where writers can get very detailed information and editors can be fully honest about what they want and what they do. My sense of the literary scene is that it needs such a forum.

How did you experience the shift in role–from submitting writer to working editor?

With resentment! No…I’m kidding. But it can be a constant struggle. Some days I feel my editor self tapping her watch and saying, “Come on, Becky, put away your fictional characters. It’s time to answer emails from real people,” while my writer self (ever a child) whines, “Now? Please, let me do just one more paragraph…”

But then, of course, when I finally step into my editorial self (a more mature and level-headed adult), I really love it. I love getting to know my reviewers, reading about different journals, corresponding with editors, writing our weekly newsletter, gaining more knowledge about what journals do, and I especially love when someone contacts me and says, “Hey, your site helped me submit and publish a story” or, “Your newsletter makes me laugh out loud.”  That’s the best.

What were your challenges in getting the project off the ground?

Once I had the idea for the site, there weren’t that many challenges getting it off the ground. Or rather, whatever challenges I faced did not feel like obstacles, rather like new problems to learn about, solve, and manage.

I think when you’re really enthusiastic about something, you just do it. You ignore the people who discourage you and you find the people who want to help. At the beginning, I had a friend sit with me in a café every night and teach me how to use Drupal, the website software. Other friends and family members helped me brainstorm logos, gave me business advice, helped design the site and tested its functionality, contributed with marketing efforts, and helped in so many ways. Then too, there have been the hundreds of writers and editors who have pitched in in some way or another. The collective generosity and enthusiasm of all these people makes everything simply feel do-able.

What role does The Review Review play in today’s marketplace? And how is it different from other establishments that collect information about literary magazines, like Duotrope or The Writers’ Market?

Increasingly, The Review Review seems to be establishing itself as a fixture in the literary community. As for what role we play, I’ll let history be the judge of that.

Insofar as how we differ from other resources, for one thing we do very comprehensive reviews. Writers’ Market is phenomenal but doesn’t go into much detail about each individual journal, or it might classify a magazine as “political.” What does that mean, political? At The Review Review, we’ll tell you! Also, unlike Duotrope, our content is 100% free and will remain that way.

What also distinguishes The Review Review is that we publish reviews that aren’t always 100% favorable to the magazine. Our mission is not to talk about how great all lit mags are no matter what. Our mission is to treat lit mags as artistic objects worthy of analysis and criticism. Sometimes that means a review will be glowing. Other times it means a review will be more critical, in the vein of any book review in a major newspaper. I don’t know any other website or publication that does this.

 

I think many up-and-coming writers dread the submission process: it’s time-consuming, costs money, and rejection is by far the most likely outcome. What advice to you have for writers who want to make submission worthwhile?

So many writers long to be published and yet don’t send out their work! I doubt this has to do with anguish over the occasional $3 reading fee or weariness over a few Submishmash forms. It really has to do with a fear of being seen, of being judged.

What can I tell you, people? Get over yourselves. If you’re hungry for publication—which is a perfectly valid hunger—go after that nourishment like an animal. Tigers don’t think, “Oh, what if this antelope doesn’t like my approach to eating?” or “What if this wild boar rejects me on account of my sharp teeth and yellow fur?”

When animals are hungry, they eat. You, dear writer, are hungry for recognition. Go feast.

Why do you choose to review specific issues, as opposed to a magazine’s general editorial approach?

I think it’s important to treat literary journals as relevant, readable entities, as ends in themselves. You can read a journal’s mission statement on their website. But what you can’t know is how that mission statement translates into the work they actually publish on a semi- or annual basis.

Reviewing individual issues lets us engage more deeply with the writing and artwork in each magazine as well as the work of specific editors at a specific time. If lit mags are relevant cultural products, which I believe they are, then each issue of each magazine is significant unto itself.

I was impressed by your review of StoryQuarterly’s 2011 Winter Issue, which pointed out some jaw-dropping editorial gaffes. The comments section on that post shows that other individuals–including one of the contributing writers in that issue–were irked as well. Do you think this review made it back to the editorial staff? Have you ever heard from editors about negative or critical reviews?

Oh, thanks! I was actually planning on taking a break from reviewing for a few months and then I came across that issue of StoryQuarterly and indeed, my jaw did drop. I felt I just had to write about those shocking typos. I never heard from the editors. I don’t know if they’ve seen it.

I have heard from a few other editors who have been less than thrilled with our reviews. It’s not common but it has happened. Sometimes the editor’s points are totally valid. Other times it’s just a clash of aesthetic between the editor and the reviewer. Then, too, there are some editors who simply hate hearing criticism. One editor wrote a very long response to my review of his magazine in addition to sending me numerous emails. He then blogged about how terrible my review was and even made a cartoon of me depicted as a donkey!

That’s cool with me, though. We’re all passionate here. I invite editors to leave comments and I hope conversations will open up around literary magazines. That is, afterall, the mission of the site.

Besides, whether an individual review is favorable or critical, the most important thing is that we are shining a light on literary magazines overall, thus highlighting their importance to our culture. We are saying that they are important enough to take seriously. The majority of editors I’ve encountered are completely on board with this mission. They appreciate having coverage of their work, regardless of whether it’s favorable or critical. Most of the editors with whom I have corresponded have been incredibly gracious and supportive.

And all that said, I always tell my reviewers to review journals as if the contributing writers are in the room with them. Be honest, but don’t be harsh or discouraging. Always give the writers and the editors the benefit of the doubt. Remember that many of these writers are getting published for the first time. Be forgiving, keep an open mind.

What does a magazine have to do to get a TRR 5-star rating?

A journal that gets 5 stars is one that really blew the reviewer away. Usually the reviewer expresses a sentiment along the lines of, “I don’t normally read poetry but now I love it…” or “I normally hate postmodern experimentation but this was unlike anything I’ve ever read before…” The journal should open doors in the reader’s mind, change his/her perspective in some way. Also, there should be nothing wrong with it, by the standards of that reviewer. If there’s even one or two stories that fall flat or a few maudlin poems, the rating will go down to 4. This, of course, is totally subjective, and depends solely on a single reviewer’s responses. But as I’ve said, people are always invited to leave responses on the site, and are welcome to disagree.

What role does humor play in The Review Review?

Are you saying you think I’m funny?

Well, I do consider myself to be a rather humor-loving individual. I do think my sense of humor comes through in the site, especially in the newsletter. One newsletter subscriber came up to me at AWP this year and said, “Hey! I love you! You’re funny!” and then walked away.  That was pretty cool.

I think a lot of writers are intimidated by the world of publishing because that’s the realm of Professionalism. Agents, editors, lit mag editors, lit mags–it can all feel like such Serious Business. But if the mission of my site is to demystify part of this world, then why not make people laugh in the process?

In your reviews, do you differentiate between print and online-only venues? Do you think the prestige gap between online and print publications is shrinking? What advice do you have about online-only publications?

Yes, we make the distinction, but we review both formats equally. I do think online journals are becoming much more prestigious. There are several anthologies that cull the best work from the web, and that has made a big impact on how these journals are perceived. Also, the mass readability of online journals is wonderful for writers.

My advice for writers who publish in online journals is to put your contact information clearly in your bio, so if people want to re-post your story or learn more about you, they can contact you directly. In this age of rampant intellectual property theft, writers should make sure they are able to retain complete ownership of their work, especially if they’re not getting paid, which is the case with most literary journals, both online and print.

To what degree is publishing a distraction for unagented writers? Do you find a lot of younger writers spending time on submissions that they should be spending on writing and revision? 

I think the hunger for recognition is always a distraction, whether it’s the desire to get your work published, the desire be retweeted, the desire to have your comments liked on Facebook, or what-have-you.

But until writers get financial subsidies from the government, until art programs are not the first thing to go in school spending cuts, until poetry is read on a national scale, until literature is discussed on TV at night, until commercial magazines start publishing fiction like they used to, until intellectual life is valued and taken seriously in our culture–it will remain hard to stay disciplined and motivated to do one’s work.

The question is not, “What’s wrong with writers who get distracted?” but “How do writers continue to stay motivated and inspired in a culture that constantly pushes them away from making serious art?” It’s just hard, every way you slice it. I have total compassion for any writer who gets distracted by a need to feel recognized and valued in our current society.

What do you think about the age-old writer’s conundrum: should you submit your best, most polished story to a more accessible, up-and-coming publication, or try to hold out for somewhere more established and “big?”

My advice: Submit to the journals you like. “Big” might not mean best, not for you anyway. Submit to the journals that excite you. If that excitement is there for a big-name journal, sobeit. But don’t get too hung up on prestige. Get to know the many, many, many incredible magazines out there that are exciting simply because people like you—whoever you are, dear writer—are publishing in them.

Then, go get ‘em, tiger.

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#80: Russell Jaffe http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/russell-jaffe-interview http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/russell-jaffe-interview#comments Wed, 27 Mar 2013 12:42:52 +0000 Ben Mauk http://www.litshow.com/?p=3126 On this Lit Show, Russell Jaffe discusses his new book, participatory poetry, small presses, the 2013 Mission Creek Festival, and building a community around art. Jaffe is an artist, poet, teacher, event organizer, and all-around participator. His debut collection, This Super Doom I Aver, is a collection of self-described “Mad Libs poems” that are designed ...

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Russell Jaffe | The Lit Show Interview

On this Lit Show, Russell Jaffe discusses his new book, participatory poetry, small presses, the 2013 Mission Creek Festival, and building a community around art.

Jaffe is an artist, poet, teacher, event organizer, and all-around participator. His debut collection, This Super Doom I Aver, is a collection of self-described “Mad Libs poems” that are designed to be co-written by and with their reader. Despite Jaffe’s claims that “our new history is avant-doom,” CA Conrad calls the book “anything but a place where we are doomed. It’s house of Magic!!”

Jaffe is also the founder and editor of Strange Cage, the small press and long-running poetry series that returns to Iowa City on April 15. His poems appear all over the Internet and are forthcoming in [PANK] and H_NGM_N. He has exhibited found sculptures made from discarded video game systems. He teaches poetry workshops in and around Iowa City. He holds an MFA from Columbia College Chicago. He loves professional wrestling in what appears to be a sincere way. His work is riotously fun, doggedly unpretentious, and [________].

Interview by Ben Mauk.

Excerpt

Complete Show

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http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/russell-jaffe-interview/feed/ 0 On this Lit Show, Russell Jaffe discusses his new book, participatory poetry, small presses, the 2013 Mission Creek Festival, and building a community around art. - Jaffe is an artist, poet, teacher, event organizer, and all-around participator. (http://www.litshow.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/index_jaffe_7451.png) On this Lit Show, Russell Jaffe discusses his new book, participatory poetry, small presses, the 2013 Mission Creek Festival, and building a community around art. Jaffe is an artist, poet, teacher, event organizer, and all-around participator. His debut collection, This Super Doom I Aver(http://www.assoc-amazon.com/e/ir?t=thlish065-20&l=as2&o=1&a=1937202062), is a collection of self-described “Mad Libs poems” that are designed to be co-written by and with their reader. Despite Jaffe’s claims that “our new history is avant-doom,” CA Conrad calls the book “anything but a place where we are doomed. It's house of Magic!!” Jaffe is also the founder and editor of Strange Cage (http://strangecage.org/), the small press and long-running poetry series that returns to Iowa City on April 15. His poems appear all over the Internet and are forthcoming in [PANK] and H_NGM_N. He has exhibited found sculptures made from discarded video game systems. He teaches poetry workshops in and around Iowa City. He holds an MFA from Columbia College Chicago. He loves professional wrestling in what appears to be a sincere way. His work is riotously fun, doggedly unpretentious, and [________]. Interview by Ben Mauk. Excerpt Complete Show The Lit Show no 54:29
#79: Terry Tempest Williams (3-12-2013) http://www.litshow.com/2013/03/17/episode-0708-terry-tempest-williams-3-12-2013/ http://www.litshow.com/2013/03/17/episode-0708-terry-tempest-williams-3-12-2013/#comments Mon, 18 Mar 2013 03:24:13 +0000 admin http://www.litshow.com/?p=3106 On this Lit Show, co-host Gemma de Choisy speaks with Terry Tempest Williams about her memoir When Women Were Birds. Williams is the author of fourteen books, including Leap, Refuge, Finding Beauty in a Broken World, and the essay collection, Red: Passion and Patience in the Desert. She is a frequent contributor to Orion Magazine ...

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On this Lit Show, co-host Gemma de Choisy speaks with Terry Tempest Williams about her memoir When Women Were Birds.

Williams is the author of fourteen books, including Leap, Refuge, Finding Beauty in a Broken World, and the essay collection, Red: Passion and Patience in the Desert. She is a frequent contributor to Orion Magazine and is a columnist for The Progressive. The current Annie Clark Tanner Scholar in Environmental Humanities at the University of Utah, Williams splits her time between Castle Valley, Utah, and Moose, Wyoming.

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http://www.litshow.com/2013/03/17/episode-0708-terry-tempest-williams-3-12-2013/feed/ 0 On this Lit Show, co-host Gemma de Choisy speaks with Terry Tempest Williams about her memoir When Women Were Birds. - Williams is the author of fourteen books, including Leap, Refuge, Finding Beauty in a Broken World, and the essay collection, On this Lit Show, co-host Gemma de Choisy speaks with Terry Tempest Williams about her memoir When Women Were Birds. Williams is the author of fourteen books, including Leap, Refuge, Finding Beauty in a Broken World, and the essay collection, Red: Passion and Patience in the Desert. She is a frequent contributor to Orion Magazine and is a columnist for The Progressive. The current Annie Clark Tanner Scholar in Environmental Humanities at the University of Utah, Williams splits her time between Castle Valley, Utah, and Moose, Wyoming. The Lit Show no 48:32
#78: Lawrence Weschler http://www.litshow.com/2013/03/17/episode-0707-lawrence-weschler-362013/ http://www.litshow.com/2013/03/17/episode-0707-lawrence-weschler-362013/#comments Mon, 18 Mar 2013 03:21:39 +0000 admin http://www.litshow.com/?p=3103 On this Lit Show, Ben Mauk speaks with acclaimed writer Lawrence Weschler, who was for more than twenty years a staff writer at The New Yorker. Weschler is the author of eleven books, including Mr. Wilson’s Cabinet of Wonders, which was short-listed for the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Critic’s Circle Award, and most ...

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On this Lit Show, Ben Mauk speaks with acclaimed writer Lawrence Weschler, who was for more than twenty years a staff writer at The New Yorker. Weschler is the author of eleven books, including Mr. Wilson’s Cabinet of Wonders, which was short-listed for the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Critic’s Circle Award, and most recently Uncanny Valley: Adventures in the Narrative. He has taught at Princeton, Columbia, Bard, Vassar, Sarah Lawrence, NYU, and his alma mater, Cowell College of the University of California at Santa Cruz.

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http://www.litshow.com/2013/03/17/episode-0707-lawrence-weschler-362013/feed/ 0 On this Lit Show, Ben Mauk speaks with acclaimed writer Lawrence Weschler, who was for more than twenty years a staff writer at The New Yorker. Weschler is the author of eleven books, including Mr. Wilson’s Cabinet of Wonders, On this Lit Show, Ben Mauk speaks with acclaimed writer Lawrence Weschler, who was for more than twenty years a staff writer at The New Yorker. Weschler is the author of eleven books, including Mr. Wilson’s Cabinet of Wonders, which was short-listed for the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Critic’s Circle Award, and most recently Uncanny Valley: Adventures in the Narrative. He has taught at Princeton, Columbia, Bard, Vassar, Sarah Lawrence, NYU, and his alma mater, Cowell College of the University of California at Santa Cruz. The Lit Show no 25:59
#77: Dina Nayeri http://www.litshow.com/2013/03/17/episode-0706-dina-nayeri-2-26-2013/ http://www.litshow.com/2013/03/17/episode-0706-dina-nayeri-2-26-2013/#comments Mon, 18 Mar 2013 03:15:52 +0000 admin http://www.litshow.com/?p=3097 On this episode of The Lit Show, current Iowa Writers’ Workshop student Dina Nayeri discusses her debut novel, A Teaspoon of Earth and Sea. Nayeri was born in Iran and moved to Oklahoma at the age of ten. Her work is scheduled for publication in over twenty countries, and has appeared in Granta New Voices, ...

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On this episode of The Lit Show, current Iowa Writers’ Workshop student Dina Nayeri discusses her debut novel, A Teaspoon of Earth and Sea. Nayeri was born in Iran and moved to Oklahoma at the age of ten. Her work is scheduled for publication in over twenty countries, and has appeared in Granta New Voices, The Southern Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, Glamour, and elsewhere. She holds an MBA from Harvard and a BA from Princeton, and is currently a Teaching Writing Fellow at the Workshop.

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http://www.litshow.com/2013/03/17/episode-0706-dina-nayeri-2-26-2013/feed/ 0 On this episode of The Lit Show, current Iowa Writers’ Workshop student Dina Nayeri discusses her debut novel, A Teaspoon of Earth and Sea. Nayeri was born in Iran and moved to Oklahoma at the age of ten. Her work is scheduled for publication in over t... On this episode of The Lit Show, current Iowa Writers’ Workshop student Dina Nayeri discusses her debut novel, A Teaspoon of Earth and Sea. Nayeri was born in Iran and moved to Oklahoma at the age of ten. Her work is scheduled for publication in over twenty countries, and has appeared in Granta New Voices, The Southern Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, Glamour, and elsewhere. She holds an MBA from Harvard and a BA from Princeton, and is currently a Teaching Writing Fellow at the Workshop. The Lit Show no 42:44
An Interview with Dina Nayeri http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/dina-nayeri-interview http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/dina-nayeri-interview#comments Mon, 18 Mar 2013 00:40:20 +0000 Elizabeth Weiss http://www.litshow.com/2013/03/17/an-interview-with-dina-nayeri-2/ On this episode of The Lit Show, current Iowa Writers’ Workshop student Dina Nayeri discussed her debut novel, A Teaspoon of Earth and Sea. Dina was born in Iran and moved to Oklahoma at the age of ten. Her work is scheduled for publication in over twenty countries, and has appeared in Granta New Voices, ...

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On this episode of The Lit Show, current Iowa Writers’ Workshop student Dina Nayeri discussed her debut novel, A Teaspoon of Earth and Sea. Dina was born in Iran and moved to Oklahoma at the age of ten. Her work is scheduled for publication in over twenty countries, and has appeared in Granta New Voices, The Southern Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, Glamour, and elsewhere. She holds an MBA from Harvard and a BA from Princeton, and is currently a Teaching Writing Fellow at the Workshop.

Dina reads from her novel on Tuesday, Feb. 25 at 7:00pm at Prairie Lights.

Interview by Elizabeth Weiss.

Complete Episode

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An Interview with Terry Tempest Williams http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/terry-tempest-williams-interview http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/terry-tempest-williams-interview#comments Mon, 11 Mar 2013 02:32:03 +0000 Gemma de Choisy http://www.litshow.com/?p=2942 On this episode of The Lit Show, Terry Tempest Williams discusses her latest book, When Women Were Birds: Fifty-Four Variations on Voice. “I am leaving you all my journals,” Williams’ mother told her, a week before she died. “But you must promise me that you will not look at them until after I am gone.” ...

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Terry Tempest Williams | The Lit Show Interview | When Women Were Birds

On this episode of The Lit Show, Terry Tempest Williams discusses her latest book, When Women Were Birds: Fifty-Four Variations on Voice.

“I am leaving you all my journals,” Williams’ mother told her, a week before she died. “But you must promise me that you will not look at them until after I am gone.” That her mother kept a journal was a surprise, but one that paled in comparison to the shock of their contents. Every one of her mother’s journals – “three shelves of beautiful clothbound books” – was empty. What follows is a meditative memoir; fifty-four essays in miniature that circle intimacy, nature, politics, and the task of writing to pose the question: What does it mean to have a voice? By turn confessional and lyrical, When Women Were Birds grapples with the privilege of speaking and the eloquence of silence.

The Seattle Times describes When Women Were Birds as “an extraordinary echo chamber in which lessons about voice – passed along from mother, to daughter, and now to us – will reverberate,” and the San Francisco Chronicle calls the book “a Whitmanesque embrace of the world and its contradictions.”

Williams is the author of fourteen books, including Leap, Refuge, Finding Beauty in a Broken World, and the essay collection, Red: Passion and Patience in the Desert. She is a frequent contributor to Orion Magazine and is a columnist for The Progressive. The current Annie Clark Tanner Scholar in Environmental Humanities at the University of Utah, Williams splits her time between Castle Valley, Utah, and Moose, Wyoming.

Complete Episode

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#76: Understanding the Essay http://www.litshow.com/2013/03/04/episode-0706-understanding-the-essay-2-22-2013/ http://www.litshow.com/2013/03/04/episode-0706-understanding-the-essay-2-22-2013/#comments Mon, 04 Mar 2013 21:50:44 +0000 admin http://www.litshow.com/?p=2924 After centuries of suffering the cold shoulder from scholars and critics (Michel de Montaigne’s blockbuster collections were, after all, released in 1580) the essay’s stylistic strategies are finally given their due in Understanding the Essay, a scholastic cri de ceour edited by Patricia Foster and Jeff Porter. Understanding the Essay’s contributors are writers who have ...

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After centuries of suffering the cold shoulder from scholars and critics (Michel de Montaigne’s blockbuster collections were, after all, released in 1580) the essay’s stylistic strategies are finally given their due in Understanding the Essay, a scholastic cri de ceour edited by Patricia Foster and Jeff Porter.

Understanding the Essay’s contributors are writers who have made their own mark on the form, including Eula Biss (writing on Ann Carson), Sven Birkerts (writing on Cynthia Ozick), Honor Moore (writing on James Baldwin), and the editors themselves.

Patricia Foster is the author of All the Lost Girls (2002) and Just Beneath My Skin (2004). A recipient of the PEN/Jerard Fund Award for nonfiction and the Fred Bonnie Award for a first novel, she is a Professor of English at the University of Iowa where she teaches in the MFA Program in Nonfiction.

Jeff Porter is the author of Oppenhiemer is Watching Me (2007). His essays have appeared in Missouri Review, Isotope, Hotel Amerika, and Antioch Review, among other journals. He is an Associate Professor of English at the University of Iowa where he also teaches in the MFA Program in Nonfiction.

Complete Episode

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http://www.litshow.com/2013/03/04/episode-0706-understanding-the-essay-2-22-2013/feed/ 0 After centuries of suffering the cold shoulder from scholars and critics (Michel de Montaigne’s blockbuster collections were, after all, released in 1580) the essay’s stylistic strategies are finally given their due in Understanding the Essay, After centuries of suffering the cold shoulder from scholars and critics (Michel de Montaigne’s blockbuster collections were, after all, released in 1580) the essay’s stylistic strategies are finally given their due in Understanding the Essay, a scholastic cri de ceour edited by Patricia Foster and Jeff Porter. Understanding the Essay’s contributors are writers who have made their own mark on the form, including Eula Biss (writing on Ann Carson), Sven Birkerts (writing on Cynthia Ozick), Honor Moore (writing on James Baldwin), and the editors themselves. Patricia Foster is the author of All the Lost Girls (2002) and Just Beneath My Skin (2004). A recipient of the PEN/Jerard Fund Award for nonfiction and the Fred Bonnie Award for a first novel, she is a Professor of English at the University of Iowa where she teaches in the MFA Program in Nonfiction. Jeff Porter is the author of Oppenhiemer is Watching Me (2007). His essays have appeared in Missouri Review, Isotope, Hotel Amerika, and Antioch Review, among other journals. He is an Associate Professor of English at the University of Iowa where he also teaches in the MFA Program in Nonfiction. Complete Episode The Lit Show no 52:51
#75: Dan Beachy-Quick and Sally Keith http://www.litshow.com/2013/03/04/episode-0705-dan-beachy-quick-and-sally-keith-2-22-2013/ http://www.litshow.com/2013/03/04/episode-0705-dan-beachy-quick-and-sally-keith-2-22-2013/#comments Mon, 04 Mar 2013 18:39:55 +0000 admin http://www.litshow.com/?p=2918 On this Lit Show, Iowa Writers’ Workshop alumni Dan Beachy-Quick and Sally Keith discuss their recent collections, their relationship as fellow poets and readers of one another’s work, and their relationship to Iowa City. Dan Beachy-Quick is the author of several books, spanning the realms of poetry, collaboration, essay, and philosophical inquiry. His most recent ...

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On this Lit Show, Iowa Writers’ Workshop alumni Dan Beachy-Quick and Sally Keith discuss their recent collections, their relationship as fellow poets and readers of one another’s work, and their relationship to Iowa City.

Dan Beachy-Quick is the author of several books, spanning the realms of poetry, collaboration, essay, and philosophical inquiry. His most recent book, Works from Memory, is a collaboration with Matthew Goulish. Sally Keith is the author of a delighting handful of poetry collections. These include Design, which was the winner of the Colorado Prize for Poetry, Dwelling Song, and most recently The Fact of the Matter (available through Milkweed Editions).

Interview by Grant Souders.

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http://www.litshow.com/2013/03/04/episode-0705-dan-beachy-quick-and-sally-keith-2-22-2013/feed/ 0 On this Lit Show, Iowa Writers’ Workshop alumni Dan Beachy-Quick and Sally Keith discuss their recent collections, their relationship as fellow poets and readers of one another’s work, and their relationship to Iowa City. - On this Lit Show, Iowa Writers’ Workshop alumni Dan Beachy-Quick and Sally Keith discuss their recent collections, their relationship as fellow poets and readers of one another’s work, and their relationship to Iowa City. Dan Beachy-Quick is the author of several books, spanning the realms of poetry, collaboration, essay, and philosophical inquiry. His most recent book, Works from Memory, is a collaboration with Matthew Goulish. Sally Keith is the author of a delighting handful of poetry collections. These include Design, which was the winner of the Colorado Prize for Poetry, Dwelling Song, and most recently The Fact of the Matter (available through Milkweed Editions). Interview by Grant Souders. The Lit Show no 41:43
An Interview with Lawrence Weschler http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/lawrence-weschler-interview http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/lawrence-weschler-interview#comments Mon, 04 Mar 2013 17:16:38 +0000 Ben Mauk http://www.litshow.com/?p=2903 Lawrence Weschler’s work fills the gap between a multifarious event and its potential meaning(s). In his narrative essays, investigative journalism, and profiles of artists and activists in exile, Weschler unspools connective tissue between seemingly disparate topics – Parkinson’s disease and woodworking, Vermeer’s serene paintings and the Yugoslav war crimes tribunal – like a mad scientist building his own ...

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Lawrence Weschler | The Lit Show Interview

Lawrence Weschler’s work fills the gap between a multifarious event and its potential meaning(s). In his narrative essays, investigative journalism, and profiles of artists and activists in exile, Weschler unspools connective tissue between seemingly disparate topics – Parkinson’s disease and woodworking, Vermeer’s serene paintings and the Yugoslav war crimes tribunal – like a mad scientist building his own idiosyncratic, supercharged brain. Whatever his subject, Weschler is determined to tease out what he describes, in that titular essay from Vermeer in Bosnia, as “felt absences” – the conspicuously excluded contradictions and convergences to be found in culture, politics, and art.

The author of more than a dozen works of nonfiction (and two-time winner of the George Polk Award), Weschler was for more than twenty years a staff writer at The New Yorker. He is the author of eleven books, including Mr. Wilson’s Cabinet of Wonders, which was short-listed for the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Critic’s Circle Award, and most recently Uncanny Valley: Adventures in the Narrative. He has taught at Princeton, Columbia, Bard, Vassar, Sarah Lawrence, NYU, and his alma mater, Cowell College of the University of California at Santa Cruz.

A visiting guest of the University of Iowa’s Nonfiction Writing Program, Weschler will deliver a lecture titled “Science and Art as Parallel and Divergent Ways of Knowing” this Wednesday, March 6, at 8 pm in Biology Building East.

Complete Episode

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#74: Ayana Mathis http://www.litshow.com/2013/02/22/episode-0704-ayana-mathis-2-20-2013/ http://www.litshow.com/2013/02/22/episode-0704-ayana-mathis-2-20-2013/#comments Fri, 22 Feb 2013 19:49:22 +0000 admin http://www.litshow.com/?p=2897 On this episode of the Lit Show, Deborah Kennedy talks with University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop alum and visiting fiction professor Ayana Mathis about her debut novel The Twelve Tribes of Hattie, which has not only received starred reviews from Publishers Weekly, Kirkus and Booklist, but was also singled out by Oprah Winfrey for her ...

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On this episode of the Lit Show, Deborah Kennedy talks with University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop alum and visiting fiction professor Ayana Mathis about her debut novel The Twelve Tribes of Hattie, which has not only received starred reviews from Publishers Weekly, Kirkus and Booklist, but was also singled out by Oprah Winfrey for her Book Club 2.0 series.

The Twelve Tribes of Hattie tells the story of Hattie Shepherd, who, in 1923, flees the violence and oppression of Jim Crow Georgia for Philadelphia, hoping for a brighter future and a share of the American dream. Winfrey has said she picked The Twelve Tribes of Hattie for her much-coveted book club partially because of Mathis’s compassionate characterization of Hattie, an indomitable heroine who does battle with the cruel forces of poverty, prejudice, and heartbreak in order that others might have a chance at something better.

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http://www.litshow.com/2013/02/22/episode-0704-ayana-mathis-2-20-2013/feed/ 0 On this episode of the Lit Show, Deborah Kennedy talks with University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop alum and visiting fiction professor Ayana Mathis about her debut novel The Twelve Tribes of Hattie, which has not only received starred reviews from Publis... On this episode of the Lit Show, Deborah Kennedy talks with University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop alum and visiting fiction professor Ayana Mathis about her debut novel The Twelve Tribes of Hattie, which has not only received starred reviews from Publishers Weekly, Kirkus and Booklist, but was also singled out by Oprah Winfrey for her Book Club 2.0 series. The Twelve Tribes of Hattie tells the story of Hattie Shepherd, who, in 1923, flees the violence and oppression of Jim Crow Georgia for Philadelphia, hoping for a brighter future and a share of the American dream. Winfrey has said she picked The Twelve Tribes of Hattie for her much-coveted book club partially because of Mathis’s compassionate characterization of Hattie, an indomitable heroine who does battle with the cruel forces of poverty, prejudice, and heartbreak in order that others might have a chance at something better. The Lit Show no 52:38
An Interview with Patricia Foster and Jeff Porter http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/understanding-the-essay/ http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/understanding-the-essay/#comments Fri, 22 Feb 2013 17:31:28 +0000 Gemma de Choisy http://www.litshow.com/?p=2879 After centuries of suffering the cold shoulder from scholars and critics (Michel de Montaigne’s blockbuster collections were, after all, released in 1580) the essay’s stylistic strategies are finally given their due in Understanding the Essay, a scholastic cri de ceour edited by Patricia Foster and Jeff Porter. Understanding the Essay’s contributors are writers who have made their own ...

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The Lit Show: Patricia Foster and Jeff Porter discuss Understanding the Essay

Season 07
Episode 06
Friday, February 22 at 5 PM CST

After centuries of suffering the cold shoulder from scholars and critics (Michel de Montaigne’s blockbuster collections were, after all, released in 1580) the essay’s stylistic strategies are finally given their due in Understanding the Essay, a scholastic cri de ceour edited by Patricia Foster and Jeff Porter.

Understanding the Essay’s contributors are writers who have made their own mark on the form, including Eula Biss (writing on Ann Carson), Sven Birkerts (writing on Cynthia Ozick), Honor Moore (writing on James Baldwin), and the editors themselves. In line with the book’s central premise that “close reading is inextricably tied to the art of writing,” and that reading in and of itself, “is nothing more nor less than an exchange of wits,” the collection features nineteen critical essays written in response to exemplars of the form, from William Hazlitt’s “On the Pleasures of Hating” to David Foster Wallace’s “A Supposedly Fun Thing I’ll Never Do Again.”

“Teachers, students, and essayists will be bending back pages and marking the margins for years to come,” says Dinty W. Moore, editor of Brevity Magazine.

Patricia Foster is the author of All the Lost Girls (2002) and Just Beneath My Skin (2004). A recipient of the PEN/Jerard Fund Award for nonfiction and the Fred Bonnie Award for a first novel, she is a Professor of English at the University of Iowa where she teaches in the MFA Program in Nonfiction.

Jeff Porter is the author of Oppenhiemer is Watching Me (2007). His essays have appeared in Missouri Review, IsotopeHotel Amerika, and Antioch Review, among other journals. He is an Associate Professor of English at the University of Iowa where he also teaches in the MFA Program in Nonfiction.

Complete Episode

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An Interview with Dan Beachy-Quick and Sally Keith http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/an-interview-with-dan-beachy-quick-and-sally-keith/ http://www.litshow.com/archive/season-07/an-interview-with-dan-beachy-quick-and-sally-keith/#comments Thu, 21 Feb 2013 06:04:23 +0000 admin http://www.litshow.com/?p=2863 On this Lit Show, Iowa Writers’ Workshop alumni Dan Beachy-Quick and Sally Keith discuss their recent collections, their relationship as fellow poets and readers of one another’s work, and their relationship to Iowa City. Dan Beachy-Quick is the author of several books, spanning the realms of poetry, collaboration, essay, and philosophical inquiry. His most recent ...

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Season 07Episode 05Air date: Friday, February 22, 2013

On this Lit Show, Iowa Writers’ Workshop alumni Dan Beachy-Quick and Sally Keith discuss their recent collections, their relationship as fellow poets and readers of one another’s work, and their relationship to Iowa City.

Dan Beachy-Quick is the author of several books, spanning the realms of poetry, collaboration, essay, and philosophical inquiry. His most recent book, Works from Memory, is a collaboration with Matthew Goulish that interrogates “the nature of memory, of the book, and of authorship in pages one hesitates to label as merely criticism, memoir, or lyric,” according to Robert Archambeau. Beachy-Quick is also the author of Circle’s Apprentice, This Nest, Swift Passerine, and other poetry collections, and his collections of essays include A Whalers Dictionary, and Wonderful Investigations. He currently resides in Fort Collins, Colorado where he teaches at Colorado State University in the Creative Writing Program.

Sally Keith is the author of a delighting handful of poetry collections. These include Design, which was the winner of the Colorado Prize for Poetry, Dwelling Song, and most recently The Fact of the Matter (available through Milkweed Editions). Rare is the poet with such grace in twining the world to the body, the corymb to the stained hand. Of The Fact of the Matter, Martin Corless-Smith writes, “These poems are the still moments between actions; time slowed to its instants, then silently reassembled, so that a thousand years ago is yesterday…. Herein is purest magic.” Keith currently resides in the ether between Washington, D.C. and Fairfax, Virginia. She teaches Creative Writing at George Mason University.

Interview by Grant Souders.

Complete Episode

 

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Episode 0703: Michael Palmer (2-15-2013) http://www.litshow.com/2013/02/19/episode-0703-michael-palmer-2-15-2013/ http://www.litshow.com/2013/02/19/episode-0703-michael-palmer-2-15-2013/#comments Tue, 19 Feb 2013 16:28:39 +0000 admin http://www.litshow.com/?p=2853 On this Lit Show, award-winning poet Michael Palmer speaks with hosts Dan Poppick and Jessica Laser about his work. Born in 1943, Michael Palmer has written twenty books of poetry, most recently Thread (New Directions, 2011). Known as the “foremost experimental poet of his generation, and perhaps of the last several generations” (citation for the ...

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On this Lit Show, award-winning poet Michael Palmer speaks with hosts Dan Poppick and Jessica Laser about his work.

Born in 1943, Michael Palmer has written twenty books of poetry, most recently Thread (New Directions, 2011). Known as the “foremost experimental poet of his generation, and perhaps of the last several generations” (citation for the Poetry Society of America’s Wallace Stevens Award, which he won in 2006), Palmer accepts language in all its imperfection—fissures, breaks, echoes, inability to sound like a singular utterance—because he trusts that a fragment can communicate a possible whole, or a number of wholes. Words may be slippery, exceeding our reach, yet, in Palmer’s work, it is through this very distance that we reach words and call them home.

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http://www.litshow.com/2013/02/19/episode-0703-michael-palmer-2-15-2013/feed/ 0 On this Lit Show, award-winning poet Michael Palmer speaks with hosts Dan Poppick and Jessica Laser about his work. - Born in 1943, Michael Palmer has written twenty books of poetry, most recently Thread (New Directions, 2011). On this Lit Show, award-winning poet Michael Palmer speaks with hosts Dan Poppick and Jessica Laser about his work. Born in 1943, Michael Palmer has written twenty books of poetry, most recently Thread (New Directions, 2011). Known as the "foremost experimental poet of his generation, and perhaps of the last several generations" (citation for the Poetry Society of America's Wallace Stevens Award, which he won in 2006), Palmer accepts language in all its imperfection—fissures, breaks, echoes, inability to sound like a singular utterance—because he trusts that a fragment can communicate a possible whole, or a number of wholes. Words may be slippery, exceeding our reach, yet, in Palmer's work, it is through this very distance that we reach words and call them home. The Lit Show no 46:37