Arthur Sze

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“When you think you’re getting good, be humble. There’s no end to the learning.” In this video, Arthur Sze visits his high school, the Lawrenceville School, and offers advice from his years of experience as a poet. Sze is the recipient of the 2013 Jackson Poetry Prize and won the 2019 National Book Award in poetry for his collection Sight Lines (Copper Canyon Press, 2019).

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Sarah M. Broom

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“If we truly love a place and are tethered to a place, then it’s our job to get to know that place.” In this Good Morning America interview, Sarah M. Broom speaks about her debut memoir, The Yellow House (Grove Press, 2019), which is a finalist for the 2019 National Book Award in nonfiction.

Julia Phillips on Disappearing Earth

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“This novel is about violence and loss, but it’s also about finding answers.” At a Penguin Random House event with librarians, Julia Phillips speaks about her debut novel, Disappearing Earth (Knopf, 2019), which is a finalist for the 2019 National Book Award in fiction.

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Martin Aitken

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“I was thinking about a whole load of names, the likes of Hamsun, Dostoevsky, Kafka...authors whose writing would be completely unfamiliar to us if it weren’t for the transformative, transcendental power of translation.” Martin Aitken—who has translated numerous Scandinavian authors including Helle Helle, Josefine Klougart, Karl Ove Knausgaard, and Dorthe Nors—accepts the 2019 PEN Translation Prize for his translation from the Norwegian of Hanne Ørstavik’s novel Love (Archipelago Books, 2018).

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Julie Otsuka on Her National Book Award Nomination

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The author of The Buddha in the Attic, who was profiled by Renée H. Shea in the September/October 2011 issue, talks about her novel's nomination for this year's National Book Award in fiction. "I feel lucky to even have an audience," she says. "A prize is something I never really thought about. Usually my concerns are very local, like 'Can I make it through this sentence or through this paragraph?'"

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Sigrid Nunez’s National Book Award Speech

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“I became a writer not because I was seeking community but rather because I thought it would be something I could do alone and hidden in the privacy of my own room,” says Sigrid Nunez in her acceptance speech for the 2018 National Book Award in fiction, which she won for her seventh novel, The Friend (Riverhead Books, 2018). “How lucky to have discovered that writing books made the miraculous possible: to be removed from the world and to be a part of the world at the same time.”

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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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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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Diana Khoi Nguyen

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“What may exist between appearance, and disappearance, between sound and silence, as something that is nearly nothing…” Diana Khoi Nguyen, a finalist for the 2018 National Book Award in poetry, reads from her debut poetry collection, Ghost Of (Omnidawn Publishing, 2018). Nguyen 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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