Literary Roadhouse Podcast: Edith Wharton’s “Roman Fever.”

December 20, 2018 § Leave a comment

Literary-Roadhouse-Header-PC-300x300A heartfelt thanks to Anais Concepción, the smart & effervescent host of Literary Roadhouse, a weekly podcast on a public-domain short story. It’s a fun and lively podcast with the noble mission of celebrating the short story form, and I had a very good time hosting a recent episode on Edith Wharton’s masterpiece, “Roman Fever.” You can listen to the podcast here—and to a wide-ranging follow-up conversation on video between Anais and me about nature,  Will Poole’s Island, a career combining writing and travel, National Geographic, Cuba, my goals of as a teacher of writing, the need to break writing “rules,” new writing projects, history as a foreign country, escapism, and more. Watch the video interview here.

Radio interview: The Round Schoolhouse & the legend of Thunderbolt

December 10, 2018 § 2 Comments

VIMG_1862ery enjoyable conversation this morning with Olga Peters of the Green Mountain Mornings radio show on WKVT Radio 100.03 FM about the local landmark and the historical characters that inspired my novel-in-progress, The Confession of Michael Martin, one of fifteen works selected for the 2018 long list of the Historical Novel Society’s New Novel Award. HNS describes it as “A novel of adventure, friendship, and immigrant life inspired by the true story of early American outlaws that is intriguingly different from Hollywood mythologies.”

Dr. John Wilson, Circa 1842 Daguerreotype, Former Highwayman Captain ThunderboltThe history behind the story is also of local interest because it represents a landmark in early Vermont and Brattleboro publishing. It’s of general interest because it’s an early entry in the great American outlaw myth, and because of what it tells us about the power of narrative to grip the human imagination and about the blurred lines between what we call history and what we call fiction. I’ll be presenting the research in a roundtable discussion sponsored by the Brattleboro Words Project at 6pm this Thursday, December 13, at 118 Elliot Street in Brattleboro. If you’re in the neighborhood, please come by!

If you’re interested in the topic but can’t make the discussion, listen to the 10 minute interview here. My heartfelt thanks to Lissa Weinmann of The Brattleboro Words Project and Olga Peters (feel better soon, Olga)!

Podcast: The Rocky Mountain Writer

October 16, 2018 § Leave a comment

podcastlogo-ORIGWhat a pleasure it was to spend part of a recent afternoon having this wide-ranging conversation with Colorado novelist Mark Stevens on The Rocky Mountain Writer podcast.

We discussed many topics of interest to writers and readers, including A Field Guide to Murder & Fly Fishing, travel and fiction, Ecuadorian volcanoes, Venezuela’s Orinoco basin, Eastern Cuba, fiction vs autobiography, the importance of place in fiction, dropping acid and pushing the bounds of objective reality, interiority and loneliness, The Grateful Dead and the Eleusinian Mysteries, fly fishing as metaphor, Ursula K. LeGuin, William Golding’s The Inheritors, Newport MFA & the Cuba Writers Program, and a recap of a talk I gave on “The Essentials of Voice” at RMFW’s Colorado Gold conference in September, 2018.

Listen to the entire podcast here. Mark also did a wonderful followup print interview here, in which we talked about life experience as a point of departure for fiction, the deep sources of story ideas, more on why I think dreams and hallucinations shouldn’t be off-limits for fiction writers, place-based writing as a response to environmental crisis, the challenge of endings, some of my favorite writers, and more. Enjoy!

A conversation about writing with James Scott of TK Podcast

August 29, 2017 § Leave a comment

TK-Podcast-LOGOReally enjoyed my conversation with James Scott on the latest episode of his terrific series of literary conversations known as the TK Podcast. James is a bestselling novelist (The Kept) and an excellent interviewer, with a real knack for asking questions about writing and life that lead to interesting places.

We talked about travel, the writing life, the binary nature of solitude, National Geographic, short fiction, how to sequence stories in a short fiction collection, the Cuba Writers Program, Ingmar Bergman, drug writingGreen Writers Press, Denis Johnson, The Grateful Dead, Cormac McCarthy’s The Road, Paul Bowles, and much, much more. Highly recommended if you’re a writer and/or a fan of literary podcasts! Here’s the link.

 

 

 

New Hampshire Public Radio interview

August 4, 2017 § Leave a comment

20638135_1376435379119205_8600078133398749042_nWhat a pleasure to travel up to Concord recently for an interview with NHPR’s All Things Considered host Peter Biello about nature, fiction, Rome, teaching, and A Field Guide to Murder & Fly FishingPeter is a writer himself, in addition to being a very fine interviewer and radio personality, and we had a lot to talk about.

Click here to listen to a podcast of the seven and a half minute interview. I think you’ll enjoy it!

New interview up at Fiction Writers Review

May 8, 2017 § Leave a comment

logoReally enjoyed this wide-ranging conversation with the perceptive Art Hutchinson at Fiction Writers Review. We discussed, among other things, extreme sports, the supernatural, foreign and historical settings, pushing the boundaries of conscious perception, and why the inner landscape is something fiction can do better than any other art. Read the whole interview here!

LitHub piece on historical fiction featuring WILL POOLE’S ISLAND

April 24, 2017 § Leave a comment

_U5B5860March 27, 2013.cr2Take a look at Crystal King’s recent article at Literary Hub regarding the relevance of historical fiction to contemporary society. Crystal, the author of Feast of Sorrow, a gripping new novel on ancient Rome, makes some excellent points about the ways in which the visceral experience of history that comes from reading novels based in the past can inform our understanding of the present. The article also presents the perspectives of ten contemporary historical novelists in whose company I’m quite honored to be included, including Jenna Blum, Anjali Mitter Duva, Margaret George, Heather Webb, and Marjan Kamali. Our current political leaders would do well to read this one!

“Historical Fiction is More Important than Ever: 10 Writers Weigh In.”

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