David Rakoff

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In a short video from earlier this year, the author of three essay collections, including his most recent, Half Empty (Doubleday, 2010), and a frequent contributor to This American Life, talks about why he writes, the nature of creativity, and why writing only gets harder. Rakoff died on Thursday night after a battle with cancer. He was forty-seven.

2 Fresh 2 Furious

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This short film, starring comedian and author Mike Birbiglia and "Fresh Air" host Terry Gross, was part of last week's live "This American Life" show that was seen in movie theaters across the country. Birbiglia's 2010 book, Sleepwalk With Me and Other Painfully True Stories, was made into a movie that will be released by IFC Films this fall.

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