Mexican-American writer and historian, Isabel Cañas, spoke to me about how to binge-write a novel, her fear of the dark, and swinging for the fences with her gothic debut "The Hacienda."
Isabel is a speculative fiction writer, and world traveler – currently working on her Ph.D. dissertation in medieval Islamic literature – who writes fiction inspired by her research and heritage.
Her debut novel is the highly-anticipated gothic, The Hacienda, "... a haunted house story...
New York Times bestselling author, Emma Straub, spoke to me about why everything in life is timing, how to write a book for yourself, time travel, and her latest "This Time Tomorrow."
Emma is the bestselling author of five novels — including All Adults Here, The Vacationers, Modern Lovers, and Laura Lamont’s Life in Pictures — the short story collection Other People We Married. Her books have been published in 20 countries.
Her latest, This Time Tomorrow, has been named...
Award-winning author and Pulitzer Prize finalist, Hernan Diaz, spoke to me about rejection, his unusual path to literary stardom, subverting reader expectations, and his latest novel "Trust."
Hernan was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for fiction and the PEN/Faulkner Award. His first novel, "In the Distance," won the Saroyan International Prize, the Cabell Award, the Prix Page America, and the New American Voices Award, among other distinctions.
His latest novel,...
Award-winning author and broadcaster, Elizabeth Day, talked to me candidly about How to Fail, hanging out with Gloria Steinem, genre equality, and how she wrote her compeller, "Magpie."
Elizabeth is a novelist, lauded journalist, and host of the chart-topping podcast, How To Fail, which has featured guests including Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Gloria Steinem, and Brene Brown.
Her latest novel, Magpie, was published in the UK in September 2021 and became an instant Sunday Times...
Critically acclaimed and award-winning author, Michelle Huneven, talked to me about her former life as an LA food critic, how to write self-referential fiction, and the spiritual detective work behind her latest novel "Search."
Michelle's books have been New York Times Notables and finalists for the LA Times Book Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award. She is the recipient of a Whiting Award for Fiction, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and a James Beard Award for...
Emmy-nominated screenwriter and author, Sascha Rothchild, spoke to me about her humble beginnings in LA, working with Marc Maron on GLOW, and how to write a "bingeable" thriller like her debut, "Blood Sugar."
Sascha has written and produced lauded TV shows including GLOW (2017), The Bold Type (2017), and The Carrie Diaries (2013), and was named Variety's “10 TV Writers to Watch” 2015.
Her long-form journalism, "How to Get Divorced by 30," was adapted into both an...
Andrew Lipstein reads excerpts from "Last Resort," backed by an original Storybound remix with sound design and arrangement by Jude Brewer.
Andrew Lipstein is a writer based in Brooklyn. His debut novel "Last Resort" is out now from Farrar, Straus & Giroux in the US, and Weidenfeld & Nicolson in the UK. His second novel will be published in 2023, also by FSG and W&N.
He also works on the product design team at Kabbage, a fintech startup, and was previously at Meural, an art tech...
The bestselling author and educator, Jennifer Close, spoke with me about writing her first book on unemployment, how to write a novel in 12 weeks, and her latest, "Marrying the Ketchups."
Jennifer is the bestselling author of Girls in White Dresses, The Smart One, and The Hopefuls.
Her latest is Marrying the Ketchups (available from Knopf | April 26, 2022), described as a "comedy of manners about three generations of a Chicago restaurant family," and "... a love letter...
Award-winning international journalist, author, and serial pundit, Adam Skolnick, returned for a mostly uncensored chat about assholes, mind-altering substances, the craft of writing, and the meaning of Jack Kerouac's 100th birthday.
Adam is an award-winning independent journalist and author covering adventure sports, environmental issues, and civil rights for outlets such as The New York Times, Outside, ESPN, BBC, and Men’s Health, among others.
He is also the author...
Internationally bestselling and award-winning Danish novelist, Sara Blaedel, spoke to me about overcoming a learning disorder, how to write Nordic Noir, and her latest novel, "A Harmless Lie."
Sara has been dubbed Denmark’s “Queen of Crime,” and is the author of the globally bestselling Detective Louise Rick series. Over 3 million copies of Blaedel’s books have sold in Denmark alone, and the author is published in 38 countries.
Her most recent hit, and 10th in the Louise...
New York Times bestselling author, Rosie Walsh, talked with me about finding her voice, transitioning from romcom to "emotional thriller," and her latest, The Love of My Life.
Rosie Walsh has lived and traveled all over the world, working as a documentary producer and writer. Her American debut, Ghosted, was a New York Times bestseller and has sold more than one million copies worldwide.
Her second novel is The Love of My Life, described as a "...stay-up-all-night...
Award-winning journalist and acclaimed author, Brandon Presser, spoke to me about his credo as a globetrotter, the Instagram-ification of travel, and his latest non-fiction novel, "The Far Land."
Brandon has a degree in art history and architecture from Harvard University, has worked in Paris at the Louvre, in Tokyo as an architectural apprentice, and in Thailand as a scuba diving professional.
He has also traveled to over 130 countries, written over 50 travel books, and was awarded a Society...
Award-winning, #1 New York Times bestselling novelist, C.J. Box, spoke to me about his early years as a small-town reporter, how to write a novel in 3-4 months, and his latest Joe Pickett book, Shadows Reel.
C.J. is the author of 30+ novels including 22 Joe Pickett novels, seven stand-alone novels, including The Bitterroots; and the story collection Shots Fired. Over ten million copies of his books have been sold in the U.S. and abroad.
He has won the Edgar, Anthony, a...
Critically acclaimed, internationally bestselling novelist, Stephanie Wrobel, spoke to me about her humble beginnings as a copywriter, turning her thesis into a bestseller, and the process of writing This Might Hurt.
Stephanie is the author of Darling Rose Gold, an instant bestseller of 2020 that received rave reviews, and was nominated for multiple awards, including the Edgar Award for Best First Novel.
Her follow-up is This Might Hurt, described as "...a dark,...
Award-winning short story writer and novelist, Kim Fu, spoke to me about speculative vs. science fiction, how to critique the future, and her collection Lesser Known Monsters of the 21st Century.
Kim is the author of two novels and a collection of poetry. Her novel For Today I Am a Boy won the Edmund White Award for Debut Fiction and was a finalist for the PEN/Hemingway Award, and a New York Times Book Review Editor’s Choice.
Her debut story collection, Lesser Known...
This week four women with several combined decades of experience in the writing and publishing industries joined me for a roundtable to talk about ...
How the last two years have changed how writers and publishers approach their business/craft
The difficulties of getting an indie book on the New York Times bestsellers list
Self vs. traditional publishing pathways and distribution models
How fast do you need to go, speedboat or yacht?
Hybrid models for...
New York Times bestselling and award-winning novelist, Elizabeth George, spoke to me about her exacting research, the discipline of psychological suspense, and interweaving cultural issues into her latest, Something to Hide.
Dubbed "an essential writer of popular fiction today” Elizabeth is the recipient of the Anthony Award, the Agatha Award, France’s Grand Prix [graan pree] di Literature, and has been twice nominated for the Edgar Award.
She's best known as the author...
Award-winning Irish author, Ruth Gilligan, spoke to me about researching the gothic wilds of Ireland, how to engineer a thriller, and her latest, The Butchers' Blessing.
Ruth Gilligan is a writer and academic from Dublin and was the youngest person ever to top the Irish Bestsellers’ List.
She has published five books and her most recent novel, The Butchers' Blessing, (published as The Butchers in the UK) is described as a "...haunting and unforgettable thriller brimming...
Critically-acclaimed debut author, Jean Chen Ho, spoke to me about the art of nonlinear storytelling, the shifting POVs in her novel Fiona and Jane, and the value of a strong writing community.
Jean was born in Taiwan and grew up in Southern California. She is a doctoral candidate in creative writing and literature at the University of Southern California – where she is a Dornsife Fellow in fiction – and has an MFA from UNLV.
Her much-anticipated debut novel is a...
Award-winning journalist and bestselling biographer, Laurence Leamer, spoke to me about getting banned from Mar a Lago, why book proposals are a con job, and Truman Capote's Women (and terminal writer's block).
Laurence is best known as the New York Times bestselling author of multiple celebrity biographies, including the trilogy, The Kennedy Women, The Kennedy Men, and Sons of Camelot.
His latest, Capote's Women: A True Story of Love, Betrayal, and a Swan Song for an...
Award-winning author and essayist, Vanessa Veselka, spoke to me about her transformation as an artist, writing out of necessity, and the journey from nervy debut to National Book Award longlist.
Vanessa is the author of the debut novel Zazen, which won the PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize in 2012.
Her second novel, The Great Offshore Grounds, was longlisted for the National Book Award for Fiction 2020, and winner of the Oregon Book Awards' Ken Kesey Award for Fiction. The...
Award-winning filmmakers and multi-hyphenate screenwriting duo, Kaz and Ryan Firpo, spoke to me about their breakout Hollywood moment, writing Marvel's Eternals, and how to eat a whale.
The Firpos are cousins who grew up in Northern California – with a storied background in commercials and documentary filmmaking – who describe themselves as "filmmakers who write."
In 2017 their first feature screenplay, RUIN, topped The Black List (a showcase for film writers) making them a hot commodity in...
Critically-acclaimed debut author, Jocelyn Nicole Johnson, spoke to me about becoming a late-stage "literary debutante," Walmart militias, and the #writinglife as an introvert.
Jocelyn is a veteran public school art teacher, whose short story “Control Negro” was anthologized in Best American Short Stories 2018, guest-edited by New York Times bestselling author Roxane Gay, and read live by LeVar Burton as part of PRI’s Selected Shorts series.
Her buzzy debut is 2021...
Journalist and Founder of the bestselling Six-Word Memoirs series, Larry Smith, spoke to me about his evolution as a journalist, TEDxing the Six-Word Memoir, and famous micro-memoirists.
In the early days of Twitter, with a single tweet in 2006 – “Can you describe your life in six words?" – Larry Smith launched what would go on to become a runaway global phenomenon.
The Six-Word Memoir Project has gone on to become a bestselling series of books, live event programs, a...