Lit-Link Round-up


Abby Geni of The Rumpus Book Club will be chatting with club members tomorrow…today we have the phenomenal Karen Bender talking with Abby to wet your whistle. (Um, I think I have been waiting my whole life for a chance to use that phrase!)

So I’m announcing it here before it debuts on our website once it’s updated within the month, but Other Voices Queretaro has added Emily Rapp and Cecil Castellucci to our 2014 faculty, which already includes Rob Roberge, Stacy Bierlein and of course…well, me. Emily will be teaching nonfiction, Rob’s on fiction, and Cecil’s workshop will welcome various forms of writing for older kids and young adults, including graphic novels. I cannot believe this shit is real. I’m so happy. Come play with us, June 27-July 6…

Are you a “writer of color?” A “woman writer?” Does it matter, and why? Roxane Gay interrogates labels at The Nation.

“Literary” reading in the United States down to 47% of the population, according to the NEA’s latest study. Wow.

PEN Literary Awards call for submissions.

And the Dzanc Books Non-Fiction Competition.

My seven-year-old son is obsessed with iced chai. So of course there’s this, on caffeine and brain development.

I can’t believe I’m missing WeHo as we speak, and then Litcrawl LA next month.

Tyler McMahon gets behind the rivalry between The Beatles vs. The Stones, over at The Weeklings.

Melissa Chadburn explores how to get out of the slushpile.

Cheryl Strayed issue of Best American Essays looks so amazing it’s criminal. Congrats Tod Goldberg, Megan Stielstra, Kevin Sampsell, Vanessa Veselka, and all the other brilliant writers included.

Speaking of Cheryl, here is Reese Witherspoon getting her fake feet made for the forthcoming film of Wild.

A stunning essay by Mag Gabbert, “Split Feather,” over at The Nervous Breakdown.

And a heartbreakingly beautiful elegy for the poet Kofi Awoonor, killed in the attacks in Nairobi. I spent a fair amount of time at Westgate mall when I was out there in 2010, which of course makes it absolutely no more or less horrific that such terror took place there, but brings it closer to my monkeysphere, which always makes things hit harder somehow.

Gina Frangello is the author of four books of fiction and a forthcoming memoir, Blow Your House Down. Her novel A Life in Men (Algonquin 2014) is currently under development by Netflix as a series produced by Charlize Theron’s production company, Denver & Delilah. Her most recent novel, Every Kind of Wanting (Counterpoint 2016) was included on several “best of” lists for 2016, including Chicago Magazine’s and The Chicago Review of Books’. She has nearly 20 years of experience as an editor, having founded both the independent press Other Voices Books, and the fiction section of the popular online literary community The Nervous Breakdown. She has also served as the Sunday editor for The Rumpus, and as the faculty editor for both TriQuarterly Online and The Coachella Review. Her short fiction, essays, book reviews, and journalism have been published in such venues as Salon, the LA Times, Ploughshares, the Boston Globe, BuzzFeed, the Chicago Tribune, the Huffington Post, Psychology Today, and in many other magazines and anthologies. After two decades of teaching at many universities, including UIC, Northwestern’s School of Continuing Studies, UCLA Extension, the University of California Riverside Palm Desert, Roosevelt University, the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and Columbia College Chicago, Gina is excited to be a student again at the University of Illinois-Chicago’s Program for Writers, where she has returned to complete the PhD she left unfinished twenty years ago. More from this author →