Things I Can Say About Ryan Boudinot Now That I’ve Read His Essay

There’s this essay making the rounds on my social media. It’s called “Things I Can Say About MFA Writing Programs Now That I No Longer Teach in One,” by Ryan Boudinot. I’ve been seeing it for days, shared by friends and former professors, writers  whose work I love, teachers whose work I admire. I’ve been avoidingContinue reading “Things I Can Say About Ryan Boudinot Now That I’ve Read His Essay”

Ain’t John Carr Walker’s Late Night Debut pretty?

About a month ago, I joined Late Night Library’s podcast series Late Night Debut, where I sat down for a conversation with author Margaret Malone about my sunnyoutside pressmate John Carr Walker​’s beautiful book, Repairable Men, and then I enjoyed a conversation with John himself. That podcast is now live online! Give it a listenContinue reading “Ain’t John Carr Walker’s Late Night Debut pretty?”

Nick Hornby and Cheryl Strayed and one of the coolest nights in my literary life

Other than the publication of my own books and the Oregon Literary Fellowship I won a couple of years ago — in other words, other than events involving my own work — I’ve had a handful of truly exhilarating, giddy, can’t-stop-grinning literary moments in my life: I once heard Kurt Vonnegut lecture (he did his amazing “shapes ofContinue reading “Nick Hornby and Cheryl Strayed and one of the coolest nights in my literary life”

The Jersey Devil puts the lotion in the basket

The February issue of Jersey Devil Press has been out for a few days now, so surely you’ve read it by now. If you haven’t, get over there for the awesome: we ride roller coasters (of love), we do a little native (love) magic, we play with a (love) snake, we erect epic, long-lasting monuments (this isContinue reading “The Jersey Devil puts the lotion in the basket”

Repairable Men, by John Carr Walker

Folks who follow me on Twitter or Goodreads have likely already seen this review of John Carr Walker’s Repairable Men, but I liked the book so much that I wanted to include the review here, too. Repairable Men: Stories by John Carr Walker My rating: 5 of 5 stars Repairable Men starts out simply enough,Continue reading “Repairable Men, by John Carr Walker”

The Jersey Devil loves pop tarts

We gorge ourselves on junk food and zoo animals and then we belch the belch of universes. Even the dinosaurs are impressed. And that, boys and girls, is basically the gist of our entire January issue! (No, seriously. Just read it. You’ll see.) Also, we’re extremely proud to start our new year with this fantastic cover art from architectContinue reading “The Jersey Devil loves pop tarts”

Books that surprised David S. Atkinson

David S. Atkinson, whose book Bones Buried in Dirt just plain delighted me this time last year and whose preview of Hagridden this year was beautiful and so greatly appreciated, well, he’s gone and done something awesome again. Not a great believer in “top books” lists, David has instead listed some books that surprised him this pastContinue reading “Books that surprised David S. Atkinson”

Upcoming events: William Stafford and Ex-Southerners

Just wanted to let folks know about a couple of upcoming reading events I’m involved in. [UPDATE: The William Stafford reading was originally Monday night, but it’s been rescheduled for Wednesday. I’ve edited this post to reflect that change.] For the first event, on Tuesday, January 13, I’ll be hosting a reading full of SouthernContinue reading “Upcoming events: William Stafford and Ex-Southerners”

Booklist 2014

It’s time again, gang, for my annual reading list. This year’s been quite light, actually — I felt like I’d read quite a bit, but turns out I managed just under 60 books. Does it count that I reread my own novel something like seven times in revisions before it came out in August? My summer months were slowest, whichContinue reading “Booklist 2014”

Winter writing retreat, day 9

Okay, so I haven’t actually done a lot of writing today. I certainly intended to, but this morning I got an email notice that some books I’d put on hold at the library had arrived, so I went to pick them up and they’re an absolute TROVE! So it’s been more of a “reading retreat.”Continue reading “Winter writing retreat, day 9”