Dani Shapiro on Memoir Writing and Twitter

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“If you’re on Twitter and Facebook and sharing there, there’s no pressure of concealment, and I think good memoir comes out of that place.” Dani Shapiro, whose fifth memoir, Inheritance: A Memoir of Genealogy, Paternity, and Love (Knopf, 2019), is featured in Page One in the January/February issue of Poets & Writers Magazine, talks with Literary Hub’s Emily Temple about how social media could have an adverse effect on writing and storytelling.

Kwame Dawes on Writing

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“I do come back to poets from the Caribbean especially, who gave me permission to be a writer.” In this interview with City of Asylum, Kwame Dawes talks about the writers whose work he revisits, his writing routine, and why he doesn’t use the word “inspiration.” Dawes is the editor in chief of Prairie Schooner and is featured in “Telling a Different Story: How to Cultivate Inclusivity at Literary Magazines” in the November/December issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

Anna Badkhen

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“I have always been interested in borders, physical and metaphysical borders, frontiers that we create...” Anna Badkhen speaks with Sarah Beth Childers at Oklahoma State University-Tulsa about the inspiration for her latest book, Fisherman Blues: A West African Community at Sea (Riverhead, 2018), and the blending of mythology and history. Badkhen was awarded the second Barry Lopez Visiting Writer in Ethics and Community Fellowship.

Ntozake Shange

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“I was a happy young woman and I just happened to write poetry…” Ntozake Shange speaks about her surprise at the impact of her poetry and the film adaptation of her choreopoem “For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide/When the Rainbow is Enuf” in this interview with Reelblack at the Art Sanctuary of Philadelphia in 2010. The poet, novelist, and playwright died on October 27, 2018 at the age of seventy.

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CAConrad

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“It was in the autumn—it felt like the perfect time to do this ritual, when everything’s changing to go to sleep for the winter....” In this interview at the 2018 Louisiana Literature festival in Denmark, CAConrad talks about how performing rituals after their boyfriend’s death gave rise to the poetry in their collection While Standing in Line for Death (Wave Books, 2017), which won the 2018 Lambda Literary Award in Gay Poetry.

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Maryse Condé

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In this 2002 interview, Guadeloupean novelist Maryse Condé talks with Ann Armstrong Scarboro, who wrote the afterword to Condé’s novel I, Tituba: Black Witch of Salem (University of Virginia Press, 2009), translated from the French by Richard Philcox, about uncovering truth in her writing. Condé is the winner of the inaugural New Academy Prize in Literature, which was established this year as an alternative to the Nobel Prize in Literature.

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Kiese Laymon

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Kiese Laymon talks to Clemonce Heard about his debut memoir, Heavy: An American Memoir (Scribner, 2018), growing up in Mississippi, the influence of music on his writing, and reckoning with weight in all its different forms. Heavy is featured in Page One in the November/December issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

Marilyn Chin

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“It takes facility, it takes brilliance, it takes verve!” Marilyn Chin talks to Joseph Ross about what it takes to write poetry and reads poems from her fifth collection, A Portrait of the Self as Nation: New and Selected Poems (Norton, 2018), which is featured in Page One in the November/December issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

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The Female Persuasion

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“I love the intimacy of a novel and how it lets you get to know people.” Meg Wolitzer speaks about her writing process, the recognition of women writers, and her latest novel, The Female Persuasion (Riverhead Books, 2018), with PBS Newshour’s Jeffrey Brown. The rights for the novel were recently acquired by Amazon Studios and Nicole Kidman’s production company.

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