Chigozie Obioma

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“My work is a tragic form of fiction that is both European and African at the same time.” In this interview for the Louisiana Channel, Chigozie Obioma speaks about how his early influences of Shakespeare and Igbo folklore led him to write his debut novel, The Fishermen (Little, Brown, 2015). Obioma is featured in “Portraits of Inspiration” in the January/February issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

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All the Lives We Ever Lived

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“Not only did To the Lighthouse help me to understand my own story, but my own story helped me to better understand To the Lighthouse—there’s sort of a beautiful reciprocity there.” Katharine Smyth talks with Michelle Dunton Cronauer about how Virginia Woolf’s 1927 novel led to writing her debut memoir, All the Lives We Ever Lived: Seeking Solace in Virginia Woolf (Crown, 2019), which is featured in Page One in the January/February issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

Yiyun Li

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“What one carries from one point to another, geographically or temporally, is one’s self.” Yiyun Li reads from her debut memoir, Dear Friend, From My Life I Write to You in Your Life (Random House, 2017), in this video produced by the Office of Communications at Princeton University. Li, whose novel Where Reasons End is forthcoming from Random House in February, is featured in “Portraits of Inspiration” in the January/February issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

Jenny Xie

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“My frugal mouth spends the only foreign words it owns. / At present, on this sleeper train, there’s nowhere to arrive.” Jenny Xie, a finalist for the 2018 National Book Award in poetry, reads “Rootless” and “Ongoing” from her debut poetry collection, Eye Level (Graywolf Press, 2018). Xie is featured in “Wilder Forms: Our Fourteenth Annual Look at Debut Poets” in the January/February issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

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Benedict Wells

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“Carson McCullers is probably the author I feel the strongest connection to, in the way of empathy and seeing the world.” Benedict Wells, whose fourth novel, The End of Loneliness (Penguin Books, 2019), translated from the German by Charlotte Collins, is featured in Page One in the January/February issue of Poets & Writers Magazine, talks about his writing process, how he began as a writer, and some of the authors who have inspired him.

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Dorianne Laux

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Dorianne Laux reads her poems “If It Weren’t for Bad Ideas, I’d Have No Ideas at All,” “Evening,” “This Close,” and “Savages” at a 2017 reading in Washington, D.C. for the Field Office. Laux’s new collection, Only as the Day Is Long: New and Selected Poems (Norton, 2019), is featured in Page One in the January/February issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

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Justin Phillip Reed

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“We live on the unanswerable, assert / that acknowledgment is inartistic, / history is regressive, and aggression / looks like no one we know…” Justin Phillip Reed reads from his debut poetry collection, Indecency (Coffee House Press, 2018), for which he won the 2018 National Book Award in poetry. Reed is featured in “Wilder Forms: Our Fourteenth Annual Look at Debut Poets” in the January/February issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

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