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Whatever Happens, I’m Having a Good Time: An Interview with David James Poissant

David James Poissant’s debut collection (Ed. note-Out Today!!!), The Heaven of Animals, promises us a book teeming with wildlife, with metaphysical questions, with people yearning for answers, and the stories deliver. A key strength of Jamie’s fiction is that in one breath he can both make us laugh and raise what Faulkner called “the old […]

Posted in Interviews

Comments: 1

Memory: Diane Cook

Diane Cook tells us about “Moving On,” her writing habits, and what we should read next.

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Comments: 0

Winter Reading: Elisa Albert

You can now read Elisa Albert’s contribution to our Winter issue online. We spoke with the author about the claustrophobic world that is “I am Happy For You That You Are So Happy.” Tin House: What was the biggest obstacle in writing “I am Happy For You That You Are So Happy”? Elisa Albert: It’s […]

Posted in Fiction, Interviews

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A Correction of the Untruths I Was Told as a Child about How the World Works: An Interview with Kyle Minor

The genius of Kyle Minor’s fiction—and there’s no other word for it—finds its clearest expression after we’ve put his story down and are left alone with our own spiraling thoughts. His new collection, Praying Drunk (Sarabande Books), raises any number of enormous questions about human nature and the possibility, however remote, of understanding the divine. […]

Posted in Fiction, Interviews

Comments: 7

Morbid Festivity: An Interview with Jerry Stahl

Early on in Happy Mutant Baby Pills, author Jerry Stahl invokes Naked Lunch—a nervy move, I thought, since what book, what writer, could weather the comparison? Jerry Stahl can.

Posted in Fiction, Interviews

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Underdog Narratives: An Interview with Davy Rothbart

Davy Rothbart is a true multimedia man. The creator of Found magazine, which displays items like lists, letters, drawings, and other ephemera sent in by readers who have found these lost items all over the world, Rothbart has also published a collection of essays (My Heart Is an Idiot), a book of short stories (The […]

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Comments: 7

The Dismal Science: A Conversation with Peter Mountford and David Shields

David Shields: All of your work seems to me mature, complex, layered, bittersweet, but this book feels almost unspeakably sad. How do you write or read about such sadness without succumbing? This is a bit of a rhetorical question on my part. I can’t read work that isn’t unspeakably sad, but I want to hear […]

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Comments: 2

What the Brain Knows: An Interview with Laura van den Berg

In “The Isle of Youth”—the title story in Laura van den Berg’s thrilling, punch-in-the-gut new story collection—a character makes reference to the concept of inborn knowledge: “how we hold inside ourselves ideas and experiences that exist on a plane far above our conscious minds.” It’s a beautiful concept, and especially useful when attempting to explain […]

Posted in General, Interviews

Comments: 3

This City Could Be Your Poet: Richmond

As Xenophobic as we Portlanders can be, we know our city is not alone when it comes to having a vibrant and eclectic and wild poetry community. In an effort to discover these territories, we have reached out to some of our favorite poets, asking them for introductions to the cities in which they write, […]

Posted in Interviews, Poetry

Comments: 1

This City Could Be Your Poet: Greenville

As Xenophobic as we Portlanders can be, we know our city is not alone when it comes to having a vibrant and eclectic and wild poetry community. In an effort to discover these territories, we have reached out to some of our favorite poets, asking them for introductions to the cities in which they write, […]

Posted in Interviews, Poetry

Comments: 0

Subtle Bodies: An Interview with Norman Rush

If memory serves, it was sometime in the early 90s that I attended a reading at the now-deceased Endicott Bookstore on New York’s Upper West Side, featuring Toby Olsen and some other guy. That other guy turned out to be Norman Rush, and he read from Mating, which quickly became my favorite novel. I found […]

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Comments: 3

November 22, 1963: A Conversation with Adam Braver

Tin House Books: What prompts you to begin a work of fiction—an image, a character, a line of dialogue? What prompted November 22, 1963? Adam Braver: Actually, it can be all of the above. A story can start from some characteristic trait, an odd sentence I’ve heard somebody mutter, or sometimes the incongruence of a setting and a […]

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Comments: 0

Kind of Kin: An Interview with Rilla Askew

I first got to know Rilla Askew at Woodstock. Well, sort of. We didn’t meet at the famous music festival, but rather almost exactly 36 years later on the very spot at which it took place: a large field in Bethel, New York. Every September, that property is given over to a Harvest Festival, which includes […]

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This City Could Be Your Poet: Minneapolis

As Xenophobic as we Portlanders can be, we know our city is not alone when it comes to having a vibrant and eclectic and wild poetry community. In an effort to discover these territories, we have reached out to some of our favorite poets, asking them for an introduction to the city in which they […]

Posted in Interviews, Poetry

Comments: 1

This is Between Us: An Interview with Kevin Sampsell

Arthur Bradford: Hey Kevin, I like your new book (This is Between Us)! It’s a very sincere and raw look at a relationship, and love. Did you have any kind of statement in mind when you set out to write this, like were you trying to show some aspect of love and relationships that might […]

Posted in Interviews, Tin House Books

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Story About the Story: An Interview with Dagoberto Gilb

Next in J.C. Hallman’s series of Q&A’s with Story About the Story contributors is writer Dagoberto Gilb. Dagoberto Gilb is the author of a number of books, including The Magic of Blood, Woodcuts of Women, and The Flowers.  Gilb’s contribution to The Story About the Story I, “The Border Trilogy by Cormac McCarthy,” first appeared in The Nation and was […]

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Comments: 0

Story About the Story: An Interview with Walter Kirn

Walter Kirn’s books include Up in the Air, Thumbsucker, and, most recently, Lost in the Meritocracy: The Undereducation of an Overachiever.  His essay included in The Story About the Story I, “Good-Bye Holden Caulfield.  I mean it.  Go!  Good-bye!” first appeared in With Love and Squalor: 14 Writers Respond to the Work of J.D. Salinger. […]

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Comments: 7

What We Write Will Last Longer Than Our Skins: An Interview with Rachel McKibbens

My mother was a more fantastic and unobtainable creature than any mermaid to me; my father more terrifying than a minotaur.

Posted in Interviews, Poetry

Comments: 2

Story About the Story: An Interview with Nicholson Baker

Nicholson Baker is the author of more than a dozen books.  His third book, U and I: A True Story, about John Updike, is a common frame of reference for many who write creative criticism today.  “Defoe, Truthteller,” reprinted in The Story About the Story II, was first published in Columbia Journalism Review, and appears […]

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Comments: 2

An Interview with Lucy Corin

When I first read Lucy Corin’s novel Everyday Psychokillers (FC2 2004) I kept thinking, “Did she really just do that?” Actually, that’s a lie, because the feeling—the thought—was something more subtle, but just as wonder-struck. It had something to do with the fact that the book intersperses chapters about preadolescent girlhood with chapters about ancient […]

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Story About the Story: An Interview with Phyllis Rose

Next in J.C. Hallman’s series of Q&A’s with Story About the Story contributors is writer Phyllis Rose. Rose is the author of Woman of Letters: A Life of Virginia Woolf and Parallel Lives: Five Victorian Marriages.  An excerpt of The Year of Reading Proust: A Memoir in Real Time appears in The Story About the Story I. J.C. Hallman: […]

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Story About the Story: An Interview with Edward Hirsch

J.C. Hallman continues his series of Q&A’s with Story About the Story contributors today with Edward Hirsch. In addition to more than half a dozen books of poems, Edward Hirsch is the author of several books of “creative criticism,” including How to Read a Poem, which is excerpted in The Story About the Story I.  Hirsch is president […]

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Comments: 1

An Interview With Peter Orner

Since 2008 whenever I’ve taught bored teenagers and I sense I need to wake them up, or entice them to believe that literature can be exciting, I go straight to a rapturously written excerpt from Peter Orner’s extraordinary novel The Second Coming of Mavala Shikongo. (A taste: “Her cheeks sag off her face like grocery […]

Posted in Fiction, Interviews, Tin House Books

Comments: 2

An interview with Chandrahas Choudhury

Traditionally Indian prose (in English) crossing the Pacific has tended to be oversized, its scale epic, its topics and styles trending intense. The current swell in the country’s publishing and readership—India is now the world’s third largest book market, and growing–raises the prospect of a more level circulation across these two Anglophone fields, a chance to read […]

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Story About the Story: An Interview with Fred Setterberg

Up next in J.C. Hallman’s series of Q&A’s with Story About the Story contributors is writer Fred Setterberg. Fred Setterberg’s contribution to The Story About the Story I, “Into Some Wild Places with Hemingway,” appears in his book, The Roads Taken: Travels Through America’s Literary Landscapes, winner of the 1992 AWP award for Creative Nonfiction.  Setterberg is the author of a number of […]

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Comments: 1