Richard Edwards Reborn

Richard Edwards doesn’t sound tired anymore. His voice is still soft, but there is an optimistic vibrancy that hadn’t been there in recent years.

He is in a quiet room in his home in Indiana talking to me on the phone. I apologize for not being able to meet in person; I couldn’t afford a flight halfway across the country. He gets money woes, though. He gets health woes, too. In fact, Edwards gets most woes that come in life. They’ve all knocked him down. He’s gotten up every single time.

The Indiana-based songwriter was diagnosed with C. Diff – an infection of the intestines – and spent most of 2015 recovering from a near fatal attack that robbed him of 40 pounds, his energy, and a tour. He says the rare disease essentially forced him into retirement. He’s since recovered, but the ailment still lingers.

“My stomach issue is a pretty consistent part of my life, but I do have longer stretches where I feel really good. I’m in one of those right now.”

Continue reading “Richard Edwards Reborn”

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Premiere reviews: FX’s ‘Atlanta’ and ‘Better Things’

Two of the best new shows on television debuted on the same network in the first week of September 2016. One was created and stars a black man. The other was created and stars a woman. The white man hierarchy of Hollywood must be wetting their beds. And they should be. FX’s Atlanta and Better Things aren’t perfect, yet. But they can be. And that’s a good thing. Continue reading “Premiere reviews: FX’s ‘Atlanta’ and ‘Better Things’”

A conversation with Travis Mulhauser

Travis Mulhauser’s debut novel may be set in a fictional county in northern Michigan, but Sweetgirl reads very much like an Appalachian or Southern Gothic novel akin to Winter’s Bone. His eloquent prose describes the beauty in the harshness of Cutler County and softens the roughness of his characters.

The novel follows Percy, an intelligent, 16-year-old high school drop out on the search for her meth addicted mother. During the search, she finds an abandoned baby in the care of two passed out drug addicts, which sends the rest of her journey into a melancholy adventure.

What is most striking about Mulhauser is how he became a writer. His style is obviously strongly influenced by his time growing up in Michigan, but unsurprisingly has strong ties to the south due to his time at the University of North Carolina – Greensboro’s MFA program.

I spoke with him about his influences and the fortitude it took to quit the comforts of a forty hour a week job to become a full-time writer. Continue reading “A conversation with Travis Mulhauser”

‘Girl Through Glass’ by Sari Wilson reviewed

[ release date: January 26, 2016 via HarperCollins]
READ: my interview with the author.

Girl Through Glass, the debut novel from Sari (rhymes with airy) Wilson, may be set in the cut-throat world ballet, but this is not a story about dance. It’s about what happens when a person’s world shatters apart and how those pieces can cut even years later. Continue reading “‘Girl Through Glass’ by Sari Wilson reviewed”