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Raven Leilani has won the 2020 Center for Fiction First Novel Prize.

The Center for Fiction First Novel Prize, first awarded in 2006, was created to honor the best debut fiction of the year. The winner receives a $15,000 cash prize and each shortlisted author receives $1,000. Previous winners include Tommy Orange and Viet Than Nguyen. This year, the winner, selected from a seven-title shortlist, is Raven Leilani, for...

Arundhati Roy on Carrying the Inquiry Through Different Art Forms

How To Proceed is a bi-monthly conversation about writing, creativity and the world we live in. Author Linn Ullmann talks to some of the world’s most exciting literary voices about their books, their writing process, and how they view the world and current events around them. Our guest in this episode is the award-winning Indian author Arundhati Roy,...

Terry Tempest Williams: Thinking of the Pandemic as a Place

Hosted by Paul Holdengräber, The Quarantine Tapes chronicles shifting paradigms in the age of social distancing. Each day, Paul calls a guest for a brief discussion about how they are experiencing the global pandemic. On Episode 136 of The Quarantine Tapes, Paul Holdengräber talks with writer Terry Tempest Williams. Terry shares beautifully observed...

How Hard Is It to Write About America?

The coronavirus pandemic is dramatically disrupting not only our daily lives but society itself. This show features conversations with some of the world’s leading thinkers and writers about the deeper economic, political, and technological consequences of the pandemic. It’s our new daily podcast trying to make longterm sense out of the chaos of today’s...

Lit Hub Daily: December 4, 2020

TODAY: In 1987, Arnold Lobel, author of the children’s book series Frog and Toad, dies. xx Also on Lit Hub: xx The post Lit Hub Daily: December 4, 2020 first appeared on Literary Hub.

Who Gets to Be a Sympathetic Character in The Undoing?

Rarely have I encountered a character more obviously fated to become a murder victim than in The Undoing, HBO’s new six-part miniseries. This doomed person is Elena Alves, the mother of a scholarship student at an elite Manhattan prep school—the kind of outsider who, in the first episode, brings her newborn baby to a fundraising committee teatime and...

Lessons in Humility From Teaching in the Mojave Desert

During your first year of teaching, a plague of grasshoppers invades the Mojave Desert. When you walk from the mobile home classroom where you teach an unruly crew of seventh grade language arts students and cross the black tarmac of the basketball courts, dead grasshoppers crunch under your loafers. You watch in dismay as one of the boys swallows a...

The Hidden Literary Heritage of Harriet the Spy

In 1963 and 1964, as Louise Fitzhugh was inventing Harriet the Spy’s world, nannies and spies were very much in the public eye. Mary Poppins and The Sound of Music were in the movie theaters. John le Carré’s The Spy Who Came in from the Cold and Ian Fleming’s James Bond books were leading hardcover and paperback bestseller lists, and Spy vs. Spy was...

How the NBA Became a Spectacle

Lon Rosen, the Los Angeles Lakers’ young director of promotions, felt like he was on his way to the principal’s office. Marvin Gaye’s out-of-this-world version of “The Star-Spangled Banner” before the 1983 NBA All-Star Game left the players in awe and whipped the Great Western Forum crowd of 17,505—give or take a few boos—into a frenzy. Rosen knew...

Aminatta Forna and Maaza Mengiste: A Conversation and Cover Real

Tumbuktu, Tehran, London, Freetown, Honolulu, New Orleans. These are but a few of the compass points visited in The Window Seat, Aminatta Forna’s debut collection of essays, which Grove/Atlantic publishes in May next year. As a reporter and traveler, Forna has been studying flight and movement for her entire life. She has also lived in its wake. Just...

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