“When as a young person you lose all your bearings, all your reference points, when the gap between where you were and where you are is as vast as the one that yawned between the DR and the US, you’re going to struggle mightily to explain not only what happened but also to explain oneself.
Posts Tagged: Junot Diaz
For T Magazine, seven authors reflect on the experience of revisiting and annotating their early works for an upcoming PEN American Center fundraiser. George Saunders thinks his style in CivilWarLand in Bad Decline was “manic and abrupt.” Jennifer Egan still regrets that she failed to include an Epic poetry chapter in A Visit From the Goon Squad....more
Samuel “Chip” Delany’s penned the landmark 800 page science fiction tri-sexual space novel, any number of short stories set through all corners of the galaxy, and a craft book Junot Diaz calls “a measure of what all criticism and literature should aspire to be, but what you might not know is that he also wrote for Wonder Woman:....more
Homogeneity in the literary scene isn’t a recent development. Earlier this year, Junot Diaz caused a stir by branding the unbearable too-whiteness of his workshop experience. Justin Torres and Ayana Mathis couldn’t help but contribute:
“One of the characters is sort of referred to as having something like almond skin, something that would identify the character as black.
The news of Michael Brown’s death cannot be ignored. When one of our young people dies from shots fired by a police officer, there will be sadness and confusion. There will inevitably be questions, and questions left unanswered will lead to anger. This is a week, perhaps, when we need fiction and art to help us try to make sense of who we are and where we go from here....more
The role-playing fantasy game, Dungeons & Dragons, has just turned 40. And along with its enduring popularity comes a literary legacy:
For certain writers, especially those raised in the 1970s and ’80s, all that time spent in basements has paid off.
Salon tracked down the syllabi of two undergrad courses the writer teaches at MIT, in the Comparative Media Studies/Writing Department....more
In the 1990s, Junot Diaz enrolled in an MFA program where there was silence when it came to critical discussions of racial identity. As Diaz writes in the New Yorker, “Shit, in my workshop we never talked about race except on the rare occasion someone wanted to argue that ‘race discussions’ were exactly the discussion a serious writer should not be having.” In this sentiment, there was a refusal to truly acknowledge the lives and cultures of certain groups of people....more
We’re all very excited about the new Beyoncé album (especially the track featuring Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie), but there’s another must-hear event for literary types: a Live from the New York Public Library conversation between Junot Díaz and Toni Morrison.
Díaz once said in an interview that “the most sustained love of mine, the one that’s carried me through all these years, is my relationship with Toni Morrison,” and as one of the NYPL’s 2013 Library Lions, he got the chance to speak with her at length onstage....more
When I started writing a novel I thought, I’m not ready, because I’ve only written short stories and nobody wants them, but I also thought, For Christ’s sake, what am I going to do? I can’t keep on like this.
Monday 10/21: Novelist Jonathan Grimwood hosts Charlotte Druckman, Gideon Lewis-Kraus, and Matt Gross for an evening of storytelling focused on obsessions. Grimwood’s novel, The Last Banquet (October 2013), set in Enlightenment era Versailles, will inspire refreshments served by chef Emily Casey. Housing Works, 7pm, free....more
If you missed The New Yorker Festival, you can click here to see Rumpus interviewees Karen Russell and Junot Díaz talk to New Yorker’s Willing Davidson about children characters and fantasy genre, as well as Rumpus Book Club interviewee George Saunders discussing his life and career with New Yorker’s Deborah Treisman....more
Social news site Reddit doesn’t have a reputation as the most literary place on the Internet, but its AMA (“Ask Me Anything”) subreddit can be a valuable way to connect authors and readers—sort of like a huge version of our Rumpus Book Club chats....more
This Is How You Lose Her, the latest collection of short stories from spectacular writer and all-around good human being Junot Díaz, will be reissued in a deluxe edition in October.
That deluxe edition will include illustrations from none other than alt-comic legend Jaime Hernandez, whose series Love and Rockets (co-created with his brother Gilbert) laid the groundwork for Díaz’s writing in many ways....more
…nothing calls for the paper shredder like a story that the writer clearly hasn’t sat on. A story that hasn’t been rewritten, or rewritten enough. So many writers that I encounter send their work in so soon. It shows, it really does.
Discussions about gender are often framed as either/or propositions. Men are from Mars and women are from Venus, or so we are told, as if this means we’re all so different it is nigh impossible to reach each other....more
Junot Díaz is the most interesting kind of…hmm…I was going to use the word “genius,” but maybe that’s not quite right for a man who spends seventeen years honing one brilliant book....more
Junot Díaz, author of the last book Jordan Alam loved, mourns Ray Bradbury, writing of how the “prescient lyrical writer with an abiding hatred for intolerance” inspired “many of our most famous dreamers” and gave Díaz his “first real taste of the power of fiction.”
“I had never been moved like that by any piece of art....more