The Nickel Boys

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“You pick the right tool for the job, and sometimes fantasy is a way to open up a story and convey a universal truth, and sometimes realism.” Colson Whitehead speaks with PBS NewsHour’s Jeffrey Brown about his writing process and the true story that inspired his latest novel, The Nickel Boys, which was published this week by Doubleday.

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Costalegre

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This book trailer by filmmaker Diego Ongaro introduces Courtney Maum’s third novel, Costalegre (Tin House Books, 2019), which tells the story of an American heiress and art collector, her neglected teenage daughter, and the elite group of artists who escape into the Mexican jungle on the eve of World War II. For more from Maum, read her installment of Ten Questions.

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Roughhouse Friday

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“Every conversation between us then had a way of spiraling into the same abyss. Real men were impossible to understand. Real men suffered. Real men were broken.” Jaed Coffin reads from his second memoir, Roughhouse Friday (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2019), which is featured in Page One in the July/August issue of Poets & Writers Magazine, and talks about his experiences barroom boxing in Alaska with Kathryn Miles for Portland Public Library’s Literary Lunch series.

The Future of Books

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“The questions that I try to answer in the book, through fiction, are questions about people I knew when I was a child…I made up the answers because I could not access the real answers.” In this Entertainment Weekly video, De’Shawn Charles Winslow, author of the debut novel, In West Mills (Bloomsbury, 2019), speaks with fellow debut authors Taffy Brodesser-Akner, Sarah M. Broom, Linda Holmes, and Lisa Taddeo about the inspiration and evolution of their books. Winslow is featured in “First Fiction 2019” in the July/August issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

Dunya Mikhail With the National Arab Orchestra

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“Yesterday I lost a country. / I was in a hurry, / and I didn’t notice when it fell from me...” Dunya Mikhail reads her poem “I Was in a Hurry” in Arabic and English, accompanied by the National Arab Orchestra. Her fourth poetry collection, In Her Feminine Sign (New Directions, 2019), is featured in Page One in the July/August 2019 issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

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Brian Evenson on Writing

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“My favorite form is the long short story or the novella because I think it allows you a little bit more breadth and scope in terms of what you can do.” Brian Evenson, whose eighth story collection, Song for the Unraveling of the World (Coffee House Press, 2019), is featured in Page One in the July/August issue of Poets & Writers Magazine, reads from his work and talks about teaching, writing habits, and spirituality in this video from the 2014 Mission Creek Festival.

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Emilie Pine

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Emilie Pine talks about fear of failure, connecting to readers, being open about grief and loss, and the power of storytelling with Ireland Unfiltered’s Dion Fanning. Pine’s debut essay collection, Notes to Self (Dial Press, 2019), is featured in Page One in the July/August issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

Rules for Writing

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“Rule No. 10: Revise, revise, revise. I cannot stress this enough. Revision is when you do what you should have done the first time, but didn’t.” Colson Whitehead, whose seventh novel, The Nickel Boys (Doubleday, 2019), is featured in Page One in the July/August issue of Poets & Writers Magazine, reads his 2012 New York Times piece “How to Write” at the Muldoon’s Picnic variety show in New York City in 2015.

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Three Women by Lisa Taddeo

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“I think desire is at once the thing we think most about and also our most slippery secret, and I wanted to explore the nuance of that intersection.” In this Simon & Schuster interview, Lisa Taddeo discusses the intimate research done for her first book, Three Women (Avid Reader Press, 2019), which is featured in Page One in the July/August issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous

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“It was an attempt to see if language can really be a bridge, as it is often aspired to be, and ultimately that it could fail.” In this video, Ocean Vuong speaks about the letter he wrote to his illiterate mother that inspired his debut novel, On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous (Penguin Press, 2019). A profile of Vuong by Rigoberto González appears in the July/August issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

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