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First Draft: A Dialogue on Writing

In writing, a first draft is where creativity flows, a story takes root and the voice of a writer emerges. First Draft: A Dialogue on Writing highlights the voices of writers as they discuss their work, their craft and the literary arts. This show hosted by Mitzi Rapkin will primarily feature fiction and non-fiction authors along with occasional poets, screenplay writers, playwrights and songwriters. First Draft is a celebration of the craft of writing and the individuals who are dedicated to bringing their carefully chosen words to print as well as the impact writers have on the world we live in.
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First Draft: A Dialogue on Writing
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Now displaying: 2017
Aug 14, 2017

Paul Yoon was born in New York City. His first book, Once the Shore, was selected as a New York Times Notable Book and a Best Debut of the Year by National Public Radio. His novel, Snow Hunters, won the 2014 Young Lions Fiction Award.  His new novel is The Mountain.

A recipient of a 5 under 35 Award from the National Book Foundation and a fellowship from the New York Public Library’s Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers, he is currently a Briggs-Copeland Lecturer at Harvard University along with his wife, the fiction writer Laura van den Berg.

Aug 7, 2017

Andrew Sean Greer is the author of six works of fiction, including the bestseller The Confessions of Max Tivoli, The Story of a Marriage and his latest novel, Less.  He splits his time between his home in San Francisco and the Santa Maddalena Foundation writer's residency in Tuscany, where he is the Executive Director.

Jul 31, 2017

Dorit Rabinyan was born in Israel to an Iranian-Jewish family. Her first two novels Persian Brides and Strand of A Thousand Pearls were both international best sellers. In 2014 Rabinyan published her third novel, All The Rivers, an immediate best seller in Israel. In January 2016 All the Rivers became the center of a political scandal in Israel when the Ministry of Education banned the book from high school’s curriculum

Jul 24, 2017

Claire Dederer is the author of Love and Trouble: A Midlife Reckoning.

Jul 17, 2017

Maile Meloy is the author of the novels Liars and Saints and A Family Daughter and the story collections Half in Love and Both Ways Is the Only Way I Want It, which was named one of the Ten Best Books of the Year by the New York Times Book Review and one of the best books of the year by the Los Angeles Times and Amazon.com. She has also written a trilogy for young readers, beginning with The Apothecary, which was a New York Times bestseller and won the 2012 E.B. White Award. Meloy’s short stories have been published in The New Yorker, The Paris Review, Granta, and Best American Short Stories 2015. Her new novel for adults is Do Not Become Alarmed.

Jul 10, 2017

Leila Aboulela is a Sudanese-born writer whose work, written in English, has received critical acclaim and a high profile for its distinctive exploration of identity, migration and Islamic spirituality. Highlighting the challenges facing Muslims in Europe and “telling the stories of flawed complex characters who struggle to make choices using Muslim logic”, Aboulela’s work explores significant political issues.

Jul 3, 2017

Nina McConigley is the author of Cowboys and East Indians.

Jun 26, 2017

Alexandria Marzano-Lesnevich is the author of THE FACT OF A BODY: A Murder and a Memoir, named an Indie Next Pick; one of the most anticipated books of 2017 by Buzzfeed, BookRiot, and the Huffington Post; a must-read for May by Goodreads, Audible.com, Entertainment Weekly, Real Simple and People; and one of the 10 best books of the year so far by Entertainment Weekly.

Jun 19, 2017

Dani Shapiro is the bestselling author of the memoirs Still WritingDevotion, and Slow Motion, and five novels including Black & White and Family History. Her work has appeared in The New Yorker, Granta, Tin House, One Story, Elle, The New York Times Book Review, the op-ed pages of The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, and has been broadcast on “This American Life”.  Her newest memoir is called Hourglass

Jun 12, 2017

Megan Abbott is the Edgar-winning author of the novels Die a Little, Bury Me Deep, The End of Everything, Dare Me and The Fever. Her most recent book is You Will Know Me, which was chosen one of Best Books of 2016 by NPR, the Wall Street Journal, the Boston Globe, Time Out NY, the Washington Post, Google, Publishers Weekly and Kirkus Reviews.

Jun 5, 2017

Chavisa Woods is the author of Things to Do When You're Goth in the Country and Other Stories.

May 29, 2017

Jesse Goolsby is the author of the novel I’d Walk with My Friends If I Could Find Them, winner of the Florida Book Award for Fiction and long-listed for the Flaherty-Duncan First Novel Prize. His fiction and essays have appeared widely, including The Literary Review, EPOCH, The Kenyon Review, Narrative Magazine, Salon, and Pleiades.

May 22, 2017

Max Winter is a graduate of UC Irvine’s MFA program, and a recipient of two Rhode Island State Council on the Arts Fellowships in Fiction. He has been published in Day One and Diner Journal. He lives in Providence, Rhode Island, with his wife and son.

May 15, 2017

Peter Heller is the author of the novels The Dog Stars, The Painter, and Celine.  He is a longtime contributor to NPR, and a contributing editor at Outside MagazineMen’s Journal, and National Geographic Adventure. 

May 8, 2017

Viet Thanh Nguyen’s novel The Sympathizer is a New York Times best seller and won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. His other books are Nothing Ever Dies: Vietnam and the Memory of War (a finalist for the National Book Award in nonfiction and the National Book Critics Circle Award in General Nonfiction) and Race and Resistance: Literature and Politics in Asian America. He is the Aerol Arnold Chair of English and Professor of American Studies and Ethnicity at the University of Southern California. His current book is the bestselling short story collection, The Refugees. 

May 1, 2017

Sarah Gerard is the author of the essay collection Sunshine State, the novel Binary Star, a finalist for the Los Angeles Times first fiction prize, and two chapbooks, most recently BFF. Her short stories, essays, interviews, and criticism have appeared in The New York Times, Granta, Vice, BOMB Magazine, and other journals, as well as anthologies. She’s been supported by fellowships and residencies from Yaddo, Tin House, PlatteForum, and Ucross. She writes a monthly column for Hazlitt and teaches writing in New York City.

Apr 24, 2017

Shulem Deen is the author of the  award-winning memoir All Who Go Do Not Return, an account of growing up in and then leaving the Skverers, one of the most insular Hasidic sects in the U.S. He is a regular contributor to Forward, and in 2015 was listed in the Forward 50, an annual list of American Jews with outsized roles on political and social issues.

Apr 17, 2017

Karen Joy Fowler is the author of six novels and three short story collections. The Jane Austen Book Club spent thirteen weeks on the New York Times bestsellers list and was a New York Times Notable Book.  Her latest novel is called We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves.

Apr 10, 2017

Jim Shepard is an American novelist and short story writer, who teaches creative writing and film at Williams College.  His latest novel is The Book of Aron.

Apr 3, 2017

Douglas Preston is a novelist, journalist, and essayist.  Preston's most recent nonfiction book, The Lost City of the Monkey God, published in January 2017, tells the true story of the discovery of an ancient, Pre-Columbian city in an unexplored valley deep in the Mosquitia Mountains of Honduras.

Mar 27, 2017

Melissa Febos is the author of the critically acclaimed memoir, Whip Smart and the essay collection, Abandon Me. Her work has been widely anthologized and appears in publications including Tin House, Granta, The Kenyon Review, Prairie Schooner, Glamour, Guernica, Post Road, Salon, The New York Times, Hunger Mountain, Portland Review, Dissent, The Chronicle of Higher Education Review, Bitch Magazine, Poets & Writers, The Rumpus, Drunken Boat, and Goodbye to All That: Writers on Loving and Leaving New York.

Mar 20, 2017

Dan Chaon’s most recent book is Ill Will,  a novel.   Other works include the short story collection Stay Awake (2012), a finalist for the Story Prize; the national bestseller Await Your Reply and Among the Missing, a finalist for the National Book Award. Chaon’s fiction has appeared in Best American Short Stories, The Pushcart Prize Anthologies, and The O. Henry Prize Stories. He has been a finalist for the National Magazine Award in Fiction, the Shirley Jackson Award, and he was the recipient of an Academy Award in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Chaon lives in Ohio and teaches at Oberlin College.

Mar 13, 2017

Deborah Willis was born and raised in Calgary, Alberta. Her first book, Vanishing and Other Stories, was named one of the the Globe and Mail's Best Books of 2009, and was nominated for the Governor General's Award. Her latest book is The Dark and Other Love Stories. She was a bookseller at Munro's Books in Victoria, BC, a writer-in-residence at Joy Kogawa House in Vancouver, BC, and the 2012-2013 Calgary Distinguished Writers Program writer-in-residence at the University of Calgary.

Mar 6, 2017

Katie Kitamura is a critic and novelist living in New York City. She is the author of Gone to the Forest and The Longshot, both of which were finalists for the New York Public Library’s Young Lions Fiction Award. A recipient of a Lannan Residency Fellowship, Kitamura has written for The New York TimesThe GuardianGrantaBOMBTriple Canopy, and is a regular contributor to Frieze.  Her most recent novel is A Separation.

Feb 27, 2017

Lily King is the author of Euphoria.

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