| Aug 1, 2013
Who is an author you'd like to meet, dead or alive?
I'd love to spend a day with John Updike in his prime, when he was cranking out poems, essays, short stories, and wonderful novels like Rabbit is Rich, just to see how he did it. (When I mentioned this...
| Dec 21, 2012
| 1:16 PM
Learning last year that Bob Boone, one of my former teachers at Highland Park High School (never mind when), was still teaching creative writing to children and adults filled me with the kind of joy you get when you return to your hometown decades later...
| Oct 12, 2012
| 9:27 AM
The prospect of interviewing Don DeLillo produces a certain anxiety. DeLillo, one of the most heralded American novelists of the past 40 years, has a reputation for being inaccessible, emotionally and otherwise. While by no means a recluse like J.D....
| Dec 7, 2012
| 12:12 PM
Shortly before he died, John Updike paid tribute to that great painter of portraits, John Singer Sargent. “We're drawn to artists who tell us that art is difficult to do, and takes a spiritual effort, because we are still puritan enough to respect a...
| Dec 7, 2012
| 12:13 PM
Every journalist's nightmare is the interview with the subject who responds to questions with one-sentence (or even one-word) answers. Fortunately, the writer Nathan Englander — who was in Chicago recently as the inaugural Crown Speaker Series...
| May 25, 2013
| 11:36 AM
The intersection of visual art and language in a graphic novel tilts the reading experience. The reader has no choice but to slide into the author's more specifically defined — and designed — world. The hallmarks of great literature are the...
| Dec 1, 2012
My first dog was a golden retriever named Tisha. Tisha was quiet and friendly, a perfect golden for a 4-year-old boy; my mother swears that when we took her to the vet one last time, as the dog lay dying on the operating table, Tisha lifted her head at...
| Nov 16, 2012
| 8:11 PM
We meet every six to eight weeks. More than half of our meetings are at local bars; the rest are at the host member's house.
We are Chicago-based,
99 percent on the North Side.
We do not read Oprah books! We are very proud of how diverse we are in...
| Nov 24, 2012
| 12:03 PM
There's a certain type of reader — often also a writer, with a leaf-fring'd MFA — who has it all figured out. The realist novel is a scam, a factory producing cardboard imitations of bourgeois life. This is the person at the party who mentions...
| Jan 11, 2013
| 3:28 PM
In this moving memoir, Katrina Kenison beckons readers into her world and proves to be an insightful guide and companion through the vicissitudes of life.
After the death of a friend, and when her youngest son leaves their rural New Hampshire home to...
| Mar 13, 2013
| 1:14 PM
The traditionally staid American Academy of Arts and Letters is both charmed and flummoxed by Bob Dylan. The academy announced Wednesday that it voted the musician into its ranks -- its first rock musician ever. But he will be an honorary member: Not...