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32 minutes | 3 days ago
How Displacement Drives Our Writing, featuring Carol Edgarian
This week’s episode, beyond tackling the subject of displacement, touches upon the San Francisco Bay Area’s legacy—since that features so largely in guest Carol Edgarian’s new novel, Vera.
29 minutes | 10 days ago
Writing About Place, featuring Hala Alyan
Whether you’re writing about where you’re from, or a place you know well, or a place you’ve researched in order to portray it in all its nuance on the page, place itself is often a character in fiction and creative writing. This week’s episode with Hala Alyan might inspire you to add more details of place to your work, or consider the role place has in your experience and understanding of the world. Place invites readers to journey to places they may know and love—or not. We hope you’re inspired this week to consider the role of place in your own work.
38 minutes | 17 days ago
Trauma as Stigma and Inspiration, featuring Paula McLain
Our conversation with Paula McLain is deep and intimate and doesn’t shy away from a few dark turns. We talk about how trauma is often a driving force, even inspiration, in our writing and our purpose; about writing as a feminist act; about intuitive writing . . . and so much more. Paula’s generosity in sharing her personal story and obstacles she’s faced is its own inspiration in this week’s show, and we get to hear firsthand some of what drew Paula to write her just-out novel, When the Stars Go Dark.
30 minutes | 24 days ago
Rewriting Classic Stories, featuring Ali Benjamin
This week is a special episode in which Grant interviews New York Times best-selling author Ali Benjamin about how she reinvented Edith Wharton’s 1911 novella, Ethan Frome, for a modern-day audience. This interview, too, is as much about process than it is anything else—how Ali writes and constructs her stories, why she prefers revision over new writing, and the challenges she faced in creating a current-events story set against the backdrop of the Kavanaugh hearings. Not to be missed!
37 minutes | a month ago
Capturing Universal Messages in Your Story, featuring Valarie Kaur
To access the universal, start with the particular. This is guest Valarie Kaur’s response to the question of how she’s able to access such profound and resonant themes and messages in her work. With this and more, Kaur, who leads the Revolutionary Love Project, talks about her writing process, the experience of delivering her popular TED talk, and her journey to becoming an author after years and years of being told her work didn’t matter. This episode beckons listeners to reach for their own ordinary courage and to see what blooms when it’s tended to.
22 minutes | a month ago
Writing Multi-generational Stories, featuring Gabriela Garcia
The multi-generational story is one of the best-loved and most epic forms of fiction. In her debut novel, guest Gabriela Garcia beautifully executes a matrilinear story, and this week’s episode dives deep into questions of structure, legacy, voice, and centering women in fiction. Garcia’s Of Women and Salt is an extraordinary contribution to this literary form, and this insightful interview offers a glimpse into some of the considerations the author faced in the writing of the book.
32 minutes | a month ago
Confessional Writing—or Just the Unvarnished Truth? featuring Kim Addonizio
Confessional writing—what is it? Something that needs to be defended? Just another way to disparage writers whose subject is self? This week’s episode with poet Kim Addonizio takes a look at what confessional writing might be, why the very characterization is problematic, and why Kim considers herself to be a poet of ideas.
26 minutes | 2 months ago
Turning What You Love Into What You Do, featuring Tieshena Davis
Many authors discover their love of publishing through the process of publishing their work independently. In this episode, entrepreneur and publisher Tieshena Davis walks us through her journey from author to publisher, and inspires with her story of purpose and drive. This episode explores the intersection between doing what you love and loving what you do.
33 minutes | 2 months ago
Geeking Out on Middle Grade, featuring Claire Swinarski
This week we’re spotlighting Middle Grade—as an evolving genre that’s increasingly popular not only with readers, but writers; and as a meaningful form that shapes kids’ understanding of the world. We’re geeking out with Middle Grade author Claire Swinarski—and even if you’re not writing Middle Grade, if you have a kid in your life, or were a reader as a kid, this episode is full of insights and information you won’t want to miss.
35 minutes | 2 months ago
The Art of Writing Epic Stories without Villains, featuring Ann Patchett
This week’s episode is in partnership with WomenLit and features the famously kind, down-to-earth, and beloved Ann Patchett in conversation with Brooke. Ann discusses why she doesn’t write villains, yes, but also why she invited someone she didn’t know all that well to live with her while she went through chemo treatment (the subject of her recent Harper’s piece, “These Precious Days”), as well as her experience as a bookstore owner, her ambivalence for social media, and much much more.
35 minutes | 2 months ago
Writing Your Family Story, featuring Louis Chude-Sokei
The family story drives so many writers to the page—regardless of genre, and in this week’s episode we hear from a writer who has an epic family story to tell. If you have a family story you want to write, you’ll relate to Louis Chude-Sokei’s exploration of needing distance on the one hand and having a fire under him to write his story on the other. We talk about Blackness in America, writing personal story in a way that highlights its uniqueness and its universality, and so much more. This episode is a real treat for anyone interested in—or wrestling with—family story.
37 minutes | 3 months ago
Getting Intentional with Your Writing, featuring Deesha Philyaw
In this upbeat and inspiring interview with The Secret Lives of Church Ladies author Deesha Philyaw, we talk about what it means to get intentional and how to get the kind of writing you really want to do off the backburner. We also get some insight into why Deesha writes about dissatisfied women and the power and influence of Bookstagramers.
33 minutes | 3 months ago
A Writer’s Journey through Fantasy—and Revision, featuring Marie Lu
One of the most hands-on tip-specific episodes we’ve done in a while, this week’s episode offers lots of great ideas about how to revise. Brooke and Grant share their go-to practices, and guest Marie Lu gives an overview of how her editor supports her through the deepening and layering of second, third, and more drafts. Plus we get some insight into Lu’s tireless journey (one that started when she was just thirteen years old!) to becoming the New York Times bestselling author she is today.
31 minutes | 3 months ago
Indie Writing, Indie Publishing, featuring Orna Ross
This Week's #WriteMindedPodcast guest, Orna Ross, is the queen of self-publishing. An award-winning and bestselling indie novelist and poet, she's also the founder-director of the Alliance of Independent Authors (ALLi), the global nonprofit association for self-publishing authors. Tune in to today's episode to gain a wealth of indie publishing wisdom through the lens of self-publishing. If you've ever been curious about a future as an indie author, or wondered if you should try self-publishing even if you have traditional publishing dreams, this episode is for you!
30 minutes | 3 months ago
Nora Ephron’s Rules of Writing: Voice, Voice, Voice! featuring Erin Carlson
Voice is the key to our self-expression, and yet it can feel elusive, difficult to capture. In this week’s episode, Write-minded guest Erin Carlson is channeling Nora Ephron, the subject of her most recent book, I’ll Have What She’s Having, and shares some of Nora’s wisdom about voice and being your own person on the page.
27 minutes | 4 months ago
The Art of Plunging In, featuring Mateo Askaripour
What is the line between recklessness and self-confidence? This is the core question Grant and Brooke are exploring in this week’s episode. They’re joined by guest Mateo Askaripour, who certainly has experience with both—and who speaks to what’s to be gained by risking it all, and the reality that even the most confident of writers can and will lose faith along the way. Plunge in with us as we explore this topic of writing with abandon, writing with longing, whether to wade in, or whether to plunge—and remember that there’s always more than one right way to write.
34 minutes | 4 months ago
Dreaming Big and On Your Own Terms, featuring S. Bear Bergman
Dreaming Big and On Your Own Terms, featuring S. Bear Bergman Description: In this episode, we bring a guest whose story is intimately tied to Brooke’s personal journey out of traditional publishing. S. Bear Bergman shares with our listeners his own experience of the marginalization and “othering” he experienced as he worked to bring his experiences as a trans man to the page—and how and when he reached his “peak f-it moment,” prompting him to strike out on his own and found the publishing company, Flamingo Rampant, which publishes feminist, culturally-diverse children’s picture books celebrating LGBT2Q+ kids and families.
31 minutes | 4 months ago
Bringing Wonder to Your Writing Process, featuring Jane Smiley
This week’s episode is in collaboration with WomenLit and brings us Brooke in conversation with Jane Smiley. In celebration of Jane’s latest novel, Perestroika in Paris, this is a conversation about wonder, about process, and about the upsides of being slow and steady. Jane is a true delight, a grounded and prolific author who always seems to be content being exactly where she is. So much to aspire to, and much to inspire too!
15 minutes | 4 months ago
Happy New Year—and Getting Back to Normal? featuring Brooke Warner and Grant Faulkner
It's a New Year!! Hallelujah. This week Brooke and Grant answer three questions around things they’ve been surprised that they miss, how their perceptions have shifted through the pandemic, and what they’re excited to get back to when things get back to “normal”—whatever and whenever that might be. And we invite our listeners to consider these questions for yourselves, too. HAPPY 2021!
30 minutes | 4 months ago
Creating in Uncertainty, featuring Devi S. Laskar
What would you do if you lost your finished manuscript due to circumstances outside of your control? This is this week’s guest’s story. Devi Laskar’s resilience in the aftermath of police raiding her home and confiscating her computer is just part of this amazing and wild tale. Devi’s experience led us to think about all the ways in which writing is naturally uncertain, how there are no guarantees, and her well-taken point that the only thing all published writers have in common is that they didn’t quit. A perfect note to end the year on.
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