Man Booker and National Book Award winners offer advice on writing

George Saunders and Jesmyn Ward are two of the largest Goliaths in the literary world right now. Saunders, a noted short story master, won the Man Booker for his first ever novel Lincoln in the Bardo. Ward, winner of the 2011 National Book Award for Salvage the Bones, took home the award again for Sing, Unburied, Sing.

I was lucky enough to interview both of them in 2017. You can read both interviews at Electric Literature and The Millions, respectively. Ward’s writing advice comes from a sub-section of the interview I did for my friends at Writer’s Bone. Here are excerpts from those interviews regarding advice to writers. Continue reading “Man Booker and National Book Award winners offer advice on writing”

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Ten books to read from 2017 (part 1 of 6)

Every two months, I’ll wrangle up ten of my favorite books that I’ve come across to recommend to friends and family (plus random internet strangers). These might range from books I think are the “best” to ones that just surprised me to authors I interviewed. Here are ten from January and February in the order that they were released.

A lot of people have been viewing all of pop culture – including literature – through the political lens of 2017. While it’s important to make these connections, it’s not always necessary. Remember, books are written years in advance. They’re purchased by publishers who pick a date in the future that they feel will be the best for sales. Some of the books on this list are easy targets when making connections to the new President Administration. Others are not. However, they all have something in common even if they don’t seem similar at all.

Some explore the past. The future. Some look at the fringe aspects of society. Some take place in America. Some don’t. All of the books explore the beautiful, as well as haunting, aspects of humanity. They all stand on their own and will still be seminal reading experiences they’re read during a more stable period. Continue reading “Ten books to read from 2017 (part 1 of 6)”