Katharine Coldiron is the guest. Her debut novella, Ceremonials, is available from Kernpunkt Press.
Coldiron's work has appeared in Ms., the Washington Post, LARB, the Times Literary Supplement, the Guardian, BUST, the Kenyon Review, the Rumpus, VIDA, Brevity, and elsewhere. She earned a B.A. in film studies & philosophy from Mount Holyoke College and an M.A. in creative writing from California State University, Northridge. She has read many, many books. Born in the American South to a professor of poetry and translation and a U.S. Navy captain, and raised along the East Coast, she now lives in Los Angeles.
In today's monologue, I respond to some mail and talk about my new social media director, Joseph Grantham.
Nicolette Polek is the guest. Her new story collection, Imaginary Museums, is available from Soft Skull Press.
Polek is a writer from Cleveland, Ohio and is a recipient of the 2019 Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers’ Award.
Amina Cain is the guest. Her new novel, Indelicacy, is available from Farrar, Straus, & Giroux.
This is Amina's second time on the program. She first appeared in Episode 390 on November 25, 2015.
She is also the author of the short story collection Creature, out with Dorothy, a publishing project, and her writing has appeared in Granta, n+1, The Paris Review Daily, BOMB, Full Stop, Vice, the Believer Logger, and elsewhere.
She lives in Los Angeles and is a literature contributing editor at BOMB.
In today's monologue, I talk briefly about the Iowa Caucuses.
Kahn's other book is called Women in Public (City Lights, 2015). She holds an MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and a BFA from California College of the Arts. And she teaches at the Poetry Field School.
In today's monologue, I respond to listener mail.
Matthew Zapruder is the guest. His latest poetry collection, Father's Day, is available from Copper Canyon Press.
This is his second time on the program. He first appeared in Episode 477 on August 9, 2017.
Zapruder is a poet, translator, professor and editor. He earned a BA in Russian literature at Amherst College, an MA in Slavic languages and literature at the University of California, Berkeley, and an MFA in poetry at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where he studied with Dara Wier, James Tate, and Agha Shahid Ali.
He is the author most recently of Sun Bear, Copper Canyon, 2014, and Why Poetry, a book of prose about poetry, Ecco/Harper Collins, 2017. An Associate Professor in the MFA at Saint Mary’s College of California, he is also editor at large at Wave Books, and from 2016-7 held the annually rotating position of Editor of the Poetry Column for the New York Times Magazine. He lives in Oakland, California. He also plays lead guitar in the rock band The Figments, a Western Massachusetts based band led by songwriter Thane Thomsen.
Zapruder’s other collections of poetry include Come On All You Ghosts (2010), The Pajamaist (2006), and American Linden (2002). He collaborated with painter Chris Uphues on For You in Full Bloom (2009) and co-translated, with historian Radu Ioanid, Romanian poet Eugen Jebeleanu’s last collection, Secret Weapon: Selected Late Poems (Coffee House, 2008).
In today's monologue, we hear a poem from Matthew Zapruder. (And there's another in the outro.)
Amanda Yates Garcia is the guest. Her new memoir, Initiated: Memoir of a Witch, is available from Grand Central Publishing.
This is Amanda's second time on the podcast. She first appeared in Episode 444 on December 21, 2016.
Garcia is a writer, artist, professional witch, and the Oracle of Los Angeles. Her work has been featured in The Millions, The LA Times, Time Out, LA Weekly, GOOP, Glamour, The London Times, CNN, Salon, as well as a viral appearance on Tucker Carlson Tonight. She has led classes and workshops on magic and witchcraft at UCLA, UC Irvine, MOCA Los Angeles, The Hammer Museum, LACMA, The Getty and many other venues. Co-host of the popular Between the Worlds podcast, Initiated is her first book.
Steffie Nelson, Heather John Fogarty, and Sarah Tomlinson are the guests. All are contributors to a new essay anthology called Slouching Towards Los Angeles: Living and Writing by Joan Didion's Light. The collection is edited by Steffie Nelson and is available from Rare Bird Books. It is the official January pick of The Nervous Breakdown Book Club.
In The White Album, Joan Didion famously wrote that “a place belongs forever to whoever claims it hardest, remembers it most obsessively…loves it so radically that he remakes it in his image.” Cruising in her Daytona yellow Corvette Stingray, taking it all in behind dark glasses, Joan Didion claimed California for all time. Slouching Towards Los Angeles is a multi-faceted portrait of the literary icon who, in turn, belongs to us.
This collection of original essays covers the turf that made Didion a sensation—Hollywood and Patty Hearst; Malibu, Manson and the Mojave; the Summer of Love and the Central Park Five—while bringing together some of the finest voices of today’s Los Angeles and beyond. Slouching Towards Los Angeles is a love letter and thank you note; personal memoir and social commentary; cultural history and literary critique. Fans of Didion, lovers of California, and fellow writers alike will all find something to dig into, in this rich exploration of the inner and outer landscapes Joan Didion traveled, shaping our own journeys in the process.
In today's monologue, I talk about the holidays.
Milo Martin is the guest. He is the author of the poetry collections Poems for the Utopian Nihilist (Echo Park Press) and the forthcoming sublemon/sublime. He is also collaborating on an upcoming art book with Gigi Spratley and Jack Waltrip.
A poet by trade, Martin has toured extensively throughout the United States and Europe. He has been invited to perform at international literature and poetry festivals in France, Italy, Germany and Croatia as well as numerous venues in Estonia, Switzerland, Holland, Liechtenstein and Serbia. His works have been translated into four languages. Educated at San Francisco State University and the University of Southern California, he currently resides in Los Angeles. He contends that birds and insects are manifest angels.
In today's monologue, Milo Martin performs some of his poetry.
Guerin is a 2014 graduate of Grub Street’s Novel Incubator program in Boston. He also has an MFA from Brandeis University and is a winner of an Illinois Arts Council Grant, the Mimi Steinberg Award for Playwriting and Sigma Tau Delta's Eleanor B. North Poetry Award. A contributor to the novelist’s blog, Dead Darlings, he is also a playwright, copywriter and journalist. He currently resides in Harpswell, Maine, with his wife, Carol, and two Brittany Spaniels.
Tim O'Brien is the guest. He is the author of The Things They Carried, which was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and National Book Critics Circle Award. And he is the recipient of the 1979 National Book Award for Fiction for his novel Going After Cacciato. His latest book, a memoir, is called Dad's Maybe Book, available now from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.
O'Brien was born in 1946 in Austin, Minnesota, and spent most of his youth in the small town of Worthington, Minnesota. He graduated summa cum laude from Macalester College in 1968. From February 1969 to March 1970 he served as infantryman with the U.S. Army in Vietnam, after which he pursued graduate studies in government at Harvard University. He worked as a national affairs reporter for The Washington Post from 1973 to 1974.
His short fiction has appeared in The New Yorker, Esquire, Harper's, The Atlantic, Playboy, and Ploughshares, and in several editions of The Best American Short Stories and The O. Henry Prize Stories. In 1987, O'Brien received the National Magazine Award for the short story, “The Things They Carried,” and in 1999 it was selected for inclusion in The Best American Short Stories of the Century, edited by John Updike. O'Brien is the recipient of literary awards from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the Guggenheim Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts. He has been elected to both the Society of American Historians and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. O'Brien currently holds the University Endowed Chair in Creative Writing at Texas State University. He lives with his wife and children in Austin, Texas.
In today's monologue, I talk briefly about my mother-in-law, who passed away recently.
This is Abigail's second time on the program. She first appeared in Episode 194 on July 28, 2013.
Tarttelin is the award-winning author of Golden Boy, “a grippingly innovative” coming-of-age novel with a “radical non-binary, pro-intersex message” (Autostraddle). Golden Boy is the winner of an Alex Award from the American Library Association, a LAMBDA Literary Award Finalist for Best LGBT Debut, a Booklist Top Ten First Novel of 2013, a School Library Journal Best Book of 2013, and is published in eight languages.
Her journalism has appeared in The Guardian, The Independent, Glamour, Phoenix, Oh Comely, and The Huffington Post. Also a screenwriter, in 2016 Abigail served as a juror for the British Independent Film Awards. She is the recipient of awards from The Authors Foundation and The K Blundell Trust in Great Britain.
In today's monologue, I discuss my low back pain, among other things.
Fiona Alison Duncan is the guest. Her debut novel, Exquisite Mariposa, is available from Soft Skull Press.
Duncan is a Canadian-American artist, writer and organizer. She is the founding host of Hard to Read, a lit series, and Pillow Talk, community organising on sex, love and communication. She lives in New York City and Los Angeles.
Leland Cheuk is the guest. His new novel, No Good Very Bad Asian, is available from C&R Press.
A MacDowell Colony and Hawthornden Castle Fellow, Cheuk is also the author of the story collection Letters from Dinosaurs (2016) and the novel The Misadventures of Sulliver Pong (2015), which was also published in translation in China (2018). His work has been covered in Buzzfeed, The Paris Review, VICE, San Francisco Chronicle, and elsewhere, and has appeared in publications such as Salon, Catapult, Joyland Magazine, Literary Hub, among other outlets. He is the founder of the indie press 7.13 Books.
He lives in Brooklyn and teaches at the Sarah Lawrence College Writing Institute.
Brodeur has spent the past two decades of her professional life in the literary world, discovering voices, cultivating talent, and working to amplify underrepresented writers. Her publishing career began with founding the fiction magazine, Zoetrope: All-Story, with filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola, where she served as editor in chief from 1996-2002. The magazine has won the prestigious National Magazine Award for best fiction four times. In 2005, she became an editor at Harcourt (later, HMH Books), where she acquired and edited literary fiction and memoir. Adrienne left publishing in 2013 to become Creative Director — and later Executive Director — of Aspen Words, a literary arts nonprofit and program of the Aspen Institute. In 2017, she launched the Aspen Words Literary Prize, a $35,000 annual award for an influential work of fiction that illuminates a vital contemporary issue and demonstrates the transformative power of literature on thought and culture.
She splits her time between Cambridge and Cape Cod, where she lives with her husband and children.
Mimi Lok is the guest. Her debut story collection, Last of Her Name, is available from Kaya Press.
Lok is the recipient of a Smithsonian Ingenuity Award and an Ylvisaker Award for Fiction, and was a finalist for the Susan Atefat Arts and Letters Prize for nonfiction. Her work can be found in McSweeney’s, Electric Literature, LitHub, Nimrod, Lucky Peach, Hyphen, the South China Morning Post, and elsewhere. She is currently working on a novel.
Lok is also the executive director and editor of Voice of Witness, an award-winning human rights/oral history nonprofit she cofounded that amplifies marginalized voices through a book series and a national education program.
In today's monologue, I get right to the interview.
Adam Mansbach is the guest. He is the author of the #1 New York Times bestseller Go the Fuck to Sleep, and has just published a new book called Fuck, Now There are Two of You.
Go the Fuck to Sleep has been translated into forty languages, named Time Magazine's 2011 "Thing of the Year," and sold over three million copies worldwide. The 2014 sequel, You Have to Fucking Eat, is also a New York Times bestseller.
Mansbach was recently nominated for an Independent Spirit Award and an NAACP Image Award for his screenplay Barry. The film premiered to rave reviews at the Toronto International Film Festival, where it was acquired by Netflix and released as a Netflix Original on December 16, 2016.
Mansbach's 2013 novel, Rage is Back, was named a Best Book of the Year by National Public Radio and the San Francisco Chronicle. Adapted for television by Mansbach and Danny Hoch, it is currently in development at USA as an hour-long drama.
Mansbach's previous novels include The End of the Jews (2008) which won the California Book Award, and the cult classic Angry Black White Boy, or the Miscegenation of Macon Detornay (2005), which is taught at more than eighty schools and was adapted into a prize-winning stage play in 2008.
His work has appeared in The New Yorker, New York Times Book Review, Esquire, The Believer, The Guardian, The Los Angeles Times, The Boston Globe, and on National Public Radio's All Things Considered, The Moth Storytelling Hour, and This American Life.
He lives in Berkeley, California, and is a frequent lecturer on college campuses.
Ashley Wurzbacher is the guest. A 5 Under 35 honoree, her debut story collection, Happy Like This, won the 2019 John Simmons Short Fiction Award. It is available from the University of Iowa Press.
Wurzbacher's writing has appeared in The Iowa Review, The Kenyon Review, Prairie Schooner, The Cincinnati Review, Colorado Review, Michigan Quarterly Review, Gettysburg Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, and elsewhere. She earned her BA from Allegheny College, her MFA from Eastern Washington University, and her PhD in Literature and Creative Writing from the University of Houston.
Originally from Titusville, Pennsylvania, she currently lives in Birmingham, Alabama and teaches creative writing at the University of Montevallo.
Steph Cha is the guest. Her new novel, Your House Will Pay, is available from Ecco.
This is Steph's second time on the program. She first appeared in Episode 319 on October 8, 2014.
Cha is also the author of the Juniper Song crime trilogy. She’s an editor and critic whose work has appeared in the Los Angeles Times, USA Today, and the Los Angeles Review of Books. A native of the San Fernando Valley, she lives in Los Angeles with her husband and two basset hounds.
In today's monologue, I get right to the conversation.
Jarett Kobek is the guest. His new novel, Only Americans Burn in Hell, is available from We Heard You Like Books.
Kobek is an internationally bestselling Turkish-American writer who lives in California. His work has been translated into nine languages and published in twelve countries. His previous books include ATTA, I Hate the Internet, and Do Every Thing Wrong!: XXXTentacion Against the World.
In today's monologue, I basically get right to the conversation.
Madeline Stevens is the guest. Her debut novel, Devotion, is available from Ecco.
Stevens is from Boring, Oregon and is currently based in Los Angeles. She holds an MFA from Columbia University and her work has been published in a variety of literary magazines. She teaches creative writing to adults and children through Catapult and Writopia Lab.
In today's monologue, I thank the show's supporters and respond to some listener mail.
Zulema Renee Summerfield is the guest. Her debut novel, Every Other Weekend, is available in trade paperback from Back Bay Books.
Summerfield holds an MFA in Creative Writing from San Francisco State University, and her work has appeared in a number of literary journals. She is also the author of a book of flash fiction, Everything Faces All Ways At Once (Fourteen Hills Press).
In addition to her writing, Summerfield is an educator and creative coach and is one half of Thoughts & Feelings. She lives in Portland, Oregon, where she is at work on a collection of short stories and a new novel.
In today's monologue, I get right to the interview.