Nonfiction

We Met Beckett at the Bar

by Barney Rosset

 

In this excerpt from the collection of correspondence and ephemera Dear Mr. Beckett: Letters from the Publisher, Grove Press's infamous and revolutionary Barney Rosset describes the first time he met the future Nobel Prize-winning writer Samuel Beckett.

 

READ MORE

 


 

 


 

Family Histories

by Roxana Robinson 

 

In this essay, award-winning author Roxana Robinson writes about the fascinating subject of her uncle, Dr. William Beecher Scoville, a neurosurgeon who inspired a character in her novel Cost. Scoville was also the subject of his grandson Luke Dittrich's recent nonfiction book, Patient H.M.: A Story of Memory, Madness, and Family Secrets. Robinson explores the concept of building character from reality for both fiction and nonfiction, and the hold that family has on our imagination. READ MORE

 


 

 


 

A Tribute to Edith Grossman 

 

Honoring one of the most celebrated literary translators of our time on the occasion of her 80th birthday. 

 

 

READ MORE

 


 

 


 

Moby-Dick and In the Heart of the Sea

by Sheridan Hay 

 

Author Sheridan Hay looks at the legacy of popular whaling stories and the lasting reach of Melville's classic. 

 

READ MORE

 


 

 


 

Appreciating Tillie Olsen

by Katherine Arnoldi

 

On the publication of Tell Me a Riddle, Requa 1 and Other Works, Katherine Arnoldi reflects on the revered author, Tillie Olsen. 

 

READ MORE

 


 

 


 

The Devil and Gustave Flaubert

by Tom Piazza

 

Tom Piazza responds to our roundtable discussion of legendary author and editor Gordon Lish and shares an excerpt from his own book Devil Sent The Rain

 

READ MORE 

 


 

 


 

On Alice Munro

by Roxana Robinson

 

Roxana Robinson, the author of such works as Sweetwater and Sparta, writes an appreciation of the masterful short story writer Alice Munro. 

 

READ MORE

 


 

 


 

Learning from Lish:

A Roundtable on Style in Fiction

by David Winters, Greg Gerke, Jason Lucarelli

 

Three writers discuss the legacy of Gordon Lish, writer and editor.

 

READ MORE  

 


 

 


 

Remembering Oscar Hijuelos

by Frederic Tuten

 

Author Frederic Tuten remembers his student and friend Oscar Hijuelos. 

 

READ MORE

 


 

 


 

Ha Jin on Literature and Evil

 

At the 2012 AWP conference, The Center for Fiction hosted a panel Literature and Evil with Ha Jin, Marilynne Robinson and Paul Harding, moderated by Noreen Tomassi. Here, the author of Nanjing Requiem elucidates his views on the danger of seeing evil as "other". 

 

READ MORE  

 


 

 


 

On Bernard Malamud

by Boris Fishman

 

The author of A Replacement Life reflects on the life of Bernard Malamud on the anniversary of what would have been his 100th birthday. 

 

READ MORE  

 

 

 


 

 


 

Remembering John Updike

by Roxana Robinson

 

The author of Sparta looks back at one of her literary mentors. 

 

READ MORE  

 


 

 


 

Dispatch from Montana

by Kevin Canty

 

The writer responds to the 2011 oil spill in Montana. 

 

READ MORE

 

 


 

 


 

 

The Strange, Beautiful, Subterranean Power of Fairy Tales:

A Forum Moderated by Kate Bernheimer

 

We asked Kate Bernheimer—author of a trilogy of brilliantly subversive tales, fairy-tale anthologist and champion-in-chief of the numinous world of Once Upon a Time, and founder and editor of Fairy Tale Review, why fairy tales deserve more respect. She answered—and then gathered celebrated writers Kevin Brockmeier, Sarah Shun-lien Bynum, Timothy Schaffert, and Maria Tatar to tell us more. READ MORE

 


 

 


 

On Lydia Davis

by Roxana Robinson

 

The author of Sparta reflects on a master of the short story form. 

 

READ MORE

 

 

 


 

 


 

Do Women Write "Tosh"?

by Roxana Robinson 

 

The author Sparta responds to V. S. Naipaul.

 

READ MORE

 

 


 

 


 

In Praise of Edith Wharton

by Roxana Robinson

 

A look at the classic author by Roxana Robinson. 

 

READ MORE

 

 


 

 


 

Remembering Barney Rosset

by Kate Morris 

 

The legendary editor's cousin, recalls his impulsive genius—and celebrates a legacy of fearless curiosity.

 

READ MORE

 

 


 

 


 

In Response to Jonathan Franzen's New Yorker piece on Edith Wharton

by Roxana Robinson

 

"Jonathan Franzen (in his essay in The New Yorker, “A Critic at Large”) addresses “the problem of sympathy” for Edith Wharton. It’s a serious matter, by his account: He finds Wharton hard to like. His reasons are personal and class-related: He castigates Wharton for her privileged family, her looks, her too few women friends, her too many famous male friends, her money, her sexual ignorance, her charmlessness, and her methods of travel."

 

READ MORE

 


 

 


 

Remembering Doris Betts: Courage and the Southern Writer

by Marjorie Hudson 

 

"Doris Betts died Saturday, April 21, 2012 at Araby Farm in Pittsboro, North Carolina. Yes, the farm was named for the James Joyce story, and not coincidentally for the up to 17 Arabian horses it kept, a passion of her husband, Judge Lowry Betts. She was author of six novels and three collections of short stories, and won many awards for her writing...."

 

READ MORE

 


 

 


 

A Quiet Giant

by Dawn Raffel

 

Merill Joan Gerber's novels and stories are worth discovering and re-discovering. 

 

READ MORE

 


 

 


 

Remembering Robert Stone

by Roxana Robinson

 

"When I first read Robert Stone’s work I was struck by the beauty of the sentences. That’s the way a writer reads, listening to cadence and rhythm and beauty, and that’s what first draws your respect and attention. Also the perfect economy of his prose: 'Father Egan left off writing, rose from his chair and made his way – a little unsteadily – to the bottle of Flor de Cana which he had placed across the room from his desk.'(From A Flag for Sunrise)."

 

READ MORE

 

 


 

 

 


 

The Chilling Aftermath of War

An excerpt from David Finkel's

Thank You For Your Service

 

"Two years later: Adam drops the baby.  

 

The baby, who is four days old, is his son, and there is a moment as he is falling that this house he has come home to seems like the most peaceful place in the world. Outside is the cold dead of 3:00 a.m. on a late- November night in Kansas, but inside is lamplight, the warm smell of a newborn, and Adam’s wife, Saskia, beautiful Saskia, who a few minutes before had asked her husband if he could watch the baby so she could get a little sleep."

 

READ MORE 

 

 


 

 

 


 

Young Charlie Parker

by Stanley Crouch 

 

"It was late autumn when Charlie Parker sidled up to one of the guys standing outside the 65 Club, on Fifty-Fifth Street at Michigan Avenue, and no one thought he might be dreaming about music. They gave him a look that was short on contempt but long on experience. These were night people, men in possession of the electricity, the anarchy, the pride, the suspicion, and the doubt of the times. They knew how it went. Whatever it was, they saw it coming." 

 

READ MORE 

JOIN NOW > CONTRIBUTE >

GET OUR UPDATES

Please bear with us while we do a little construction on this page. We're in the process of making all of the wonderful content on our site easier to find and so we'll be continually updating this page with new entries. 

 

For a list of all of the authors on our site please visit this page