Endowed in perpetuity by the Glenna Luschei Fund for Excellence

December 2012

"Good Creative Nonfiction Begins in Good Reporting"

A Conversation with Steven Barthelme

This interview is the sixth in the Crooked Letter Interview Series hosted by Prairie Schooner’s Southern Correspondent, James Madison Redd.

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Steven Barthelme has two books of non-fiction, the memoir, Double Down, co-authored with his brother, and the essay collection The Early Posthumous Work. Earlier stories were collected in And He Tells the Little Horse the Whole Story, and a new collection titled Hush Hush appeared in October 2012.

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Redd: You come from a family of writers, all of whom specialize in a different form, from advertisement to novel writing. You’re the most practiced at personal nonfiction writing. Do you see yourself as the family chronicler?

Schoonering Through Nebraska

Tenth Stop: Beatrice, or “Ten Things I Learned on Tour”

Kwame Dawes and Marianne Kunkel are embarking on a goodwill tour across Nebraska, from public library to public library to connect people with the journal and to celebrate the value of the literary arts in the states. Along the way, they are blogging about their journey. This is Marianne’s last blog entry in the series after visiting Beatrice, Nebraska.

Schoonering Through Nebraska

Ninth Stop: Vibrant Norfolk

Kwame Dawes and Marianne Kunkel are embarking on a goodwill tour across Nebraska, from public library to public library to connect people with the journal and to celebrate the value of the literary arts in the states. Along the way, they are blogging about their journey. This is Marianne’s seventh blog entry in the series after visiting Norfolk, Nebraska.

A city's a city's a city. That is, until I started visiting extremely small and slightly larger cities. Driving out of Battle Creek to Norfolk, which holds about 24,000 people, I laughed at how big Norfolk seemed in comparison. It has chain restaurants, streetlights, and a long drag of a main road that reminds me of the central strip in southern beach towns like Gulf Shores and Orange Beach.

Schoonering Through Nebraska

A Blog of Sorts

Kwame Dawes and Marianne Kunkel are embarking on a goodwill tour across Nebraska, from public library to public library to connect people with the journal and to celebrate the value of the literary arts in the states. Along the way, they are blogging about their journey. This is Kwame’s eighth blog entry after a visit to Battle Creek, Nebraska.

Battle Creek, NE
Pop. 1,207

Schoonering Through Nebraska

A Blog of Sorts

Kwame Dawes and Marianne Kunkel are embarking on a goodwill tour across Nebraska, from public library to public library to connect people with the journal and to celebrate the value of the literary arts in the states. Along the way, they are blogging about their journey. This is Kwame’s seventh blog entry after a visit to Neligh, Nebraska.

Neligh, Nebraska
Pop. 1,599

Schoonering Through Nebraska

Seventh/Eighth Stops: Neligh and Battle Creek

Kwame Dawes and Marianne Kunkel are embarking on a goodwill tour across Nebraska, from public library to public library to connect people with the journal and to celebrate the value of the literary arts in the states. Along the way, they are blogging about their journey. This is Marianne’s sixth blog entry in the series after visiting Neligh and Battle Creek, Nebraska.

We ran into light snow on the drive from Lincoln to Neligh, Nebraska, a town of about 1,500 people. Sadly, it didn’t follow us all the way to Neligh Public Library, but other sights proved just as interesting: hints of green on a drought-stricken landscape and the red clay color of the highway that made us wonder, what makes the road that color?

Schoonering Through Nebraska

A Blog of Sorts

Kwame Dawes and Marianne Kunkel are embarking on a goodwill tour across Nebraska, from public library to public library to connect people with the journal and to celebrate the value of the literary arts in the states. Along the way, they are blogging about their journey. This is Kwame’s sixth blog entry after his visit to Omaha, Nebraska.

Omaha, NE
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Omaha suddenly feels massive after several days on the road across this state. Nebraska, of course, is lopsided. In terms of population, the east is crowded, and in terms of open space the west is the hands-down winner.

Schoonering Through Nebraska

A Blog of Sorts

Kwame Dawes and Marianne Kunkel are embarking on a goodwill tour across Nebraska, from public library to public library to connect people with the journal and to celebrate the value of the literary arts in the states. Along the way, they are blogging about their journey. This is Kwame’s fifth blog entry after his visit to Stromsburg, Nebraska.

Stromsburg, NE
Pop. 1,171

One of the good fortunes of reading at a library with a book club is that they will, if convinced, en mass to the reading, and they have already become a single organism with the instinct of humor or empathy as a well-shaped and practiced collective. This is what met us at the Stromsburg public library on the north eastern plains of Nebraska. As a result we had a great turnout and a lively and engaging audience.

Schoonering Through Nebraska

Fifth and Sixth Stops: Stimulating Stromaha (Stromsburg and Omaha)

Kwame Dawes and Marianne Kunkel are embarking on a goodwill tour across Nebraska, from public library to public library to connect people with the journal and to celebrate the value of the literary arts in the states. Along the way, they are blogging about their journey. This is Marianne's fifth blog entry after her visit to Omaha and Stromsburg, Nebraska.

Saturday marked the halfway point of our library tour. Feeling a little drained by the long drives, by living out of a suitcase, and by desperately searching for cafes with free wifi in each city we stop in, I needed a pick-me-up. Lucky for me, the best kind was available. My husband, Dave, joined me, Kwame, and Lorna for two library visits that day in Stromsburg Public Library and Omaha’s Charles B. Washington Branch Library.

 

Of Red Soil, Ragas and Rides of Fancy

Sangam House Writing Residency

This is the tenth in a series of blog posts by guest contributor Nabina Das, who writes about Indian books and authors.

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One of India’s most talked about writing residencies, Sangam House, is in full swing right now. Housed in Nrityagram (literally, the dance village), an Odissi training center 40 km from the “silicon valley” city of Bangalore, they say the red soil of the campus--which incidentally has also been used to plaster the walls of Sangam House’s residence--makes its imprint on clothes, flip flops, and even the soles of feet to remind you of the ambiance for a long time to follow. Nestled close to the village of Hesarghatta, Nrityagram was founded by Protima Bedi, the legendary danseuse. Sangam House moved in to the campus only recently after hosting fellows in and around Pondicherry.

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