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.

The Poet X

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The Poet X is my third novel, but it’s the first one published.” At the New York State Writers Institute, Elizabeth Acevedo speaks about making the transition from poetry to fiction, facing rejection, and learning to persevere in the process of publishing her first novel, The Poet X (HarperTeen, 2018), which is longlisted for the 2018 National Book Award in young people’s literature.

Rebecca Makkai

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“You’re writing in total isolation. It’s like getting dressed in the dark, the complete dark, and then you have to go out on stage.” On Late Night With Seth Meyers, Rebecca Makkai discusses what it feels like to publish a book, the research behind her new novel, The Great Believers (Viking, 2018), and why she enjoys teaching MFA students. The Great Believers is longlisted for the 2018 National Book Award in fiction.

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Elif Batuman

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“The main advice I would have is to be really easy on yourself, to shut off as much as you can the voice that’s saying maybe you’re wasting your time, and maybe everything that you do is stupid.” Elif Batuman, a finalist for the 2018 Pulitzer Prize for her debut novel, The Idiot (Penguin Press, 2017), talks to Granta about the literary model of Charles M. Schulz’s Snoopy and the blurred boundary between fiction and nonfiction.

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Eve L. Ewing

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In this short film, Eve L. Ewing talks about her writing process and reads one of her poems for AIR Serenbe, the nonprofit artist residency program of the Serenbe Institute in Georgia. Ewing is the author of Electric Arches (Haymarket Books, 2017) and is featured in “The Whole Self: Our Thirteenth Annual Look at Debut Poets” in the January/February issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

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