New Waves

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“It’s a novel about how grief makes people hilariously selfish, especially when the internet is involved,” says Kevin Nguyen about his debut novel, New Waves (One World, 2020), in this first episode of Literary Hub’s Sheltering video series hosted by Maris Kreizman. Nguyen also talks about how he’s been spending his time cooking and watching television during the coronavirus pandemic.

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Garous Abdolmalekian

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In this bilingual reading presented virtually from three cities hosted by Poets House, Garous Abdolmalekian reads poems from his collection Lean Against This Late Hour (Penguin Books, 2020), along with Ahmad Nadalizadeh and Idra Novey, who cotranslated the book from the Persian. Lean Against This Late Hour is featured in Page One in the May/June issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

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Cast Away Poems

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“We will survive / hold a little beauty during difficult times / Quiet feels round as a planet / surely a bigger quiet / holds us all.” In this HarperStacks at Home video, Naomi Shihab Nye reads from her new collection, Cast Away: Poems for Our Time (Greenwillow Books, 2020), and talks about her connection to the things that people throw away.

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Small Days and Nights

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“We are cheating death, all the time, passing one overcrowded town, then another, and another.” This short animated film offers a preview of Tishani Doshi’s novel Small Days and Nights (Bloomsbury Circus, 2019), which is shortlisted for the Royal Society of Literature Ondaatje Prize 2020.

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Hoppy Hour With Samantha Irby

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“Years ago, right after I moved into my last apartment in Chicago, the one I expected to die alone in to the soundtrack of an NCIS marathon, I thought I had a ghost.” In this Loft Literary Center video, one of their recent online events from their annual Wordplay festival (held entirely virtually this year through May 9) features a reading by Samantha Irby from her fourth essay collection, Wow, No Thank You (Vintage, 2020), backdropped with video footage of rabbits.

AAWW at Home: Celeste Ng

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“We would try by any means / To reach the limits of ourselves, to reach beyond ourselves, / To let go the means, to wake.” In the first installment of the Asian American Writers’ Workshop’s AAWW at Home series in which writers share how they have been spending their time during the coronavirus pandemic, Celeste Ng talks about her current activities and concerns, and reads Muriel Rukeyser’s “Poem” from The Speed of Darkness (Vintage Books, 1968).

2020 International Booker Prize Shortlist

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“I think it’s a brave shortlist—we’ve picked books that are daring, experimental, not at all conventional,” says Valeria Luiselli about the six books selected for the 2020 International Booker Prize shortlist in this video with fellow judges Lucie Campos, Jennifer Croft, Ted Hodgkinson, and Jeet Thayil.

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Hotbed #224

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“Mama was an elevator girl at Montgomery Ward’s in Trenton, New Jersey, summer of 1952...” In this video with poet Alondra Uribe, Nikky Finney reads “Hotbed #224” from her collection Love Child’s Hotbed of Occasional Poetry (TriQuarterly Books, 2020), which is featured in Page One in the May/June issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

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An Interview With Wanda Coleman

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“It was almost effortless. It was an amazing experience because it was as though the poems were writing me.” In this Poetry.LA interview from 2013, the late Wanda Coleman speaks about the moment she felt like a poet, her career as a soap opera writer, and how she finds enjoyment in writing. Wicked Enchantment: Selected Poems (Black Sparrow Press, 2020), a new collection of Coleman’s poetry edited by Joshua Bodwell and Terrance Hayes, is featured in Page One in the May/June issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

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Afia Atakora

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“For me, the library was an ultimate treat, it was a second home, and it was a place that I could lose myself if I had to, it was an escape.” In this 2019 video, Afia Atakor speaks about how the library inspired her writing career and introduces a crowd of librarians to her debut novel, Conjure Women (Random House, 2020), which is featured in Page One in the May/June issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

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