Not too long after she met her husband Ralph, author Marcy Luikart (formerly Woolf) helped him fulfill a lifelong dream of building a raft and floating down the Mississippi River.
Inspired by that journey, the former Fairfielder, now living in Santa Barbara, wrote "River Braids," the story of a former midwesterner who returns to his roots along the Mississippi River and discovers the real history behind the family story of his grandfather Joe on the 1904 Olympic rowing team. The tale weaves back and forth between the modern day and the St. Louis Worlds' Fair and Olympics of 1904.
This is Marcy's second appearance on Writers' Voices. As one of our first guests, in 2006 Marcy discussed her success with getting stories published in literary magazines. "River Braids" is her first published novel.
Join Monica and Caroline on Writers' Voices this week for an English teacher's dream as we welcome Kevin Smokler, author of "Practical Classics: 50 Reasons to Reread 50 Books You Haven't Touched Since High School." Just released from Prometheus books, "Practical Classics" covers a lot of ground, from Shakespeare to "Huckleberry Finn," with stops along the way for "The Bell Jar," "To Kill a Mockingbird" and oh so much more.
And yes, Caroline was a high school Engilsh teacher (here at FHS).
Kevin Smokler has been called "a publishing visionary" by the Huffington Post. His writing on the arts has appeared in the Los Angeles Times, Fast Company, and he was a recent guest on NPR's "Talk of the Nation."
Caroline and Monica welcome Nancy Kennedy, editor of the "Miracles and Moments of Grace" series back to Writers' Voices this week for an inspiring hour of stories from Moms.
Nancy's previous books include two others in the Miracles and Moments of Grace series - "Inspiring stories from Military Chaplains" and Caroline's favorite, "Inspiring Stories from Doctors" as well as a book of weight loss success stories "How We Did It."
If you are a Mom, have a Mom, or know a Mom - you will surely enjoy this interview.
If you're intrigued by new ideas; excited by in-depth conversation on consciousness; or inspired by visionary speakers who are thinking and doing outside the box -sometimes far outside - then the upcoming (April 20) conference hosted by MUM, "Our Conscious Future" has probably caught your interest.
This Friday on Writers's Voices, join Monica and Caroline as they invite conference speaker, best-selling author, Discovery Health TV medical host and NIH medical researcher Dr. Pamela Peeke to discuss the neuruological basis of food addiction. Dr. Peeke's most recent book, "The Hunger Fix" provides a three stage detox and recovery plan for overeating and food addiction.
Dr. Peeke has also written columns and editorials for O, Prevention, Fitness and More magazines and is a regular health news commentator for national and cable networks.
Allen Cobb returns to Writers' Voices this week to tell Monica and Caroline about his latest publishing venture - "The Rules for the game of life" - A novel, in which secrets are revealed.
According to Allen, "t's a little comical, a little cosmic, and hopefully a fun read. As many of you know, I've been collecting a strange set of "rules" — with tongue firmly in cheek — and I finally succumbed to repeated requests to "make them into a book." It quickly turned into an unexpected little novel, one which pretty much wrote itself. (Which is probably a Good Thing.)"
Allen is also a poet, a sound artist, and a publisher so no doubt this will be a far-ranging conversation on Writers' Voices!
art this post-Valentine's season. Paul Stokstad, writer, tennis pro, webmaster, marketing director and poet is here to talk love and tattoos with Writers' Voices host Monica Hadley. Butterfuly Tattoo is Paul's third published book, and somewhat of a deprature from "How To Be Your Own Best Tennis Pro" and "How to Start Your Own Improv Comedy Group."
As of 2011 over 235,000 books have been self-published, and the growing trend towards e-books makes this an even more feasible option for authors. But what would make a traditionally-published author decide to go independent? Join Monica and Caroline on Writers' Voices this week as they discuss this with Sabrina Ricci, whose essay, "Why Traditionally Published Authors are Going Indie" recently appeared on Huffington Post.
Ricci is a freelance writer whose own self-published novella, "The 13th Cycle" is widely available online. She was also the co-founder and publisher of FictionBrigade, a micropublisher of flash fiction ebooks. FictionBrigade's ebook "Espresso Fiction" is an award-winning finalist in the 'E-book: General Fiction' category of The 2012 USA Best Book Awards, sponsored by USA Book News. Previously, Ricci worked for traditional publishers Random House and Simon & Schuster.
For most writers, going from concept to finished product is a mostly solitary pursuit, and getting across the finish line is largely dependent on your own efforts. With the sefl-publishing technology available today, you don't necessarily need anyone else in order to publish your work. But for a screenwriter, getting the script finished is only half the battle - if that. What does it take to get a movie made?
Join Monica and Caroline on Writers' Voices
as they talk to Caterina Titus, of www.rubystarproductions.com to learn more about the screenwriter's journey. Caty is the co-writer of “Pyaar” - a social political feature film (with Stuart Tanner,) and romantic dramedy "Between Worlds" (with actor/director Ruben Pla.) Her goal is to create films that address the issues of globalization. For the last five years she has been developing a valuable network of contacts in the film industry as she focuses on getting her movies made.
Writers' Voices brings two Fairfield authors to the air this week with their debut books. First, Tony Kainauskas, the long-time proprietor of Fairfield's sorely missed 21st Century Bookstore, will discuss his memoir "A Time of Innocence: My Personal Memories of Viktoras Kulvinskas and the Transcendenal Meditation Community." Tony's cousin, Viktoras is known as the Father of the Raw Foods Movement, and publishing and distributing Viktoras' first book, "Survival into the 21st Century" helped launch Tony's lifelong career in books. Tony also shares his memories of the early days of the TM movement.
For the second half of the show, essayist Chris Hallinger will join Monica and Caroline in the studio to talk about his hilarious, Dave-Barryish book of essays, entitled "Life on Earth" and to discuss how he and Monica may be related through Hans Herr, the original leader of the settlement of Lancaster County, PA.
"That Reminds Me: A Conversational Memoir" by Norman Zierold, takes the reader on an exuberant journey, both outward and inward, from pre-Depression-era Iowa (the Amana Colonies), to Europe, NYC, Hollywood, and back again to Iowa (Fairfield, that is.) Join Writers' Voices hosts Monica Hadley and Caroline Kilbourn to learn from Norman the inside stories that only the author of such Hollywood biographies as "Garbo", "The Child Stars", and "The Moguls" would know. How did a boy from the Amanas come to rub elbows with the rich and famous of the mid-20th century? And what brought him back to Iowa?
"That Reminds Me" will be released on Amazon January 12, 2013.
Welcome Monica Hadley back to live radio this Friday as she and guest host Bob Ferguson interview Peter Fusaro, noted speaker and author of 16 books including “What Went Wrong at Enron.” His three most recent books have been “Cut Carbon, Grow Profits,” “Energy & Emissions: Collision or Convergence” and “Energy & Environmental Hedge Funds: The New Investment Paradigm.”
Peter is an energy industry thought leader noted for his keen insights in emerging energy and environmental financial markets. He has been on the forefront of energy and environmental change for over 30 years focusing on oil, gas, power, coal, emissions, carbon trading and renewable energy markets.
Playwright Kate Aspengren ventured into new territory recently by releasing her first middle grade novel, Ashley Templeton Is Ruining My Life, with Foreverland Press. Samuel French, Inc., published Kate's plays:Dear Mrs. Martin, Mother's Day, House of Wonders, Flyer, and Blue Yonder. Born in Des Moines, Kate earned her MFA from the University of Iowa's Playwrights Workshop. Her plays have been produced by the Actors Theatre of Louisville, the New American Comedy Festival, Six Figures Theatre Company (in New York), and 3Graces (also in New York). Two of her plays have been translated for European production.
For 17 years, Kate's held an annual playwriting residency at Tower Hill School in Wilmington, Delaware, where she works with middle school students. Kate has also taught playwriting at Grinnell College, Coe College, and Cornell College. She co-directs the University of Iowa's annual ten-minute play festival and teaches at the Iowa Summer Writing Festival. Kate lives in Iowa City with her dog, Cooper.
Iowa City author Michelle Edwards has written over a dozen books for children, including Chicken Man, which won the National Jewish Book Award. In her latest picture book, Room for the Baby (illustrated by Jana Christy), a family makes room for baby #2 by transforming hoarded cast-offs into useful and fun craft projects. Michelle's other new book (nonfiction for adults), A Knitter's Home Companion, is an illustrated collection of thoughtful essays, knitting patterns, and recipes. Michelle, who illustrated many of her picture books, studied at the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design in Jerusalem and earned an MFA in printmaking from the University of Iowa. Meet her in Fairfield Friday, Dec. 7th during a book signing/reading in the At Home Store on the town square.
Susie Hathaway helps women over 50 stay active and strong. Certified as a personal trainer through the American College of Sports Medicine, she's an active volunteer for the National Osteoporosis Foundation. Her newsletter and exercise-advice blog provide tips on how to stay healthy, strong, and independent during the second half of your life. Susie recently wrote, produced, and released a home-exercise DVD called Susie Hathaway's Safe Strength Training for Osteoporosis Prevention.
Linda Sue Park is probably best known for writing the 2002 Newbery winner, A Single Shard, for which she became the first Korean American to win the Newbery. That book and many of her others, including A Long Walk to Water, have been named to various best-book-of-the-year awards.
Linda Sue, herself, has been honored with the Boston Public Library Literary Lights Award, the Empire State Author Award, and Rochester, New York's Arts Council Literary Artist of the Year Award.
Nerve, Jeanne Ryan's young adult novel about a shy girl unintentionally enmeshed in a dangerous online game of dares, was released in September 2012 by Dial Books.
Raised in a family of 11 brothers and sisters, Jeanne spent her early childhood in Hawaill and the rest of her growing-up years trying to figure out how to get back there. Along the way, she lived in South Korea, Michigan, and Germany.
Now she lives in Seattle with her husband and children. Jeanne holds a degree in social welfare. Before writing fiction, she tried her hand at many things, including war game simulation and youth development research.
Ethel Barker's experiences teaching remedial reading to Junior High students helped her recognize the need for books that educate while holding students' interest. In 1988 while reading an Iowa history magazine called The Palimpsest, she spotted an historic photo of three ragged boys asleep beside a trash pile on a New York City street.
The accompanying article, "The Orphan Train Comes to Clarion" triggered her interest in the orphan train movement and Iowa's involvement in it. Years of research and writing culminated in Ice Cube Press's recent publication of Ethel's debut juvenile novel, For the Love of Pete: An Orphan Train Story. Ethel will read from this book at Prairie Lights Book Store in Iowa City at 7 PM on November 15th.
Eula Biss teaches creative writing at Northwestern University. Her book, Notes From No Man's Land, received the Graywolf Press Nonfiction Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award for Criticism. Her work has also been recognized by a Pushcart Prize, a Jaffe Writers Award, a 21st Century Award from the Chicago Public Library.
Eula holds a BA in Nonfiction Writing from Hampshire College and an MFA in Nonfiction Writing from the University of Iowa. Her essays have recently appeared in The Best American Nonrequired Reading, The Best Creative Nonfiction, and a host of other literary journals.
Eula will be in Iowa City Wednesday, October 24th to speak at an Englert Theater literary event with Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist and essayist Marilynne Robinson. Click on picture for complete event details.
Heather Alexander, an Assistant Editor for Dial Books for Young Readers, acquires books for all ages, picture books to young adult novels, and ushers them through the publication process. Heather edits the award-winning and popular Charlie and Lola picture books.
She also edited Jeanne Ryan's debut young adult novel, Nerve, in which a naive teen girl gets caught up in an anonymous online game of dares.
Listen in to learn what's new in the world of books for young readers.
Los Angeles-based author Philip Goldberg is a screenwriter, Huffington Post religious-issues blogger, novelist, and nonfiction writer. His book American Veda: From Emerson and the Beatles to Yoga and Meditation, How Indian Spirituality Changed the West was named one of the top ten books on religion in 2010 by the Huffington Post.
The American Library Association's Booklist Online awarded it the same honor in 2011. Philip has authored or co-authored nineteen books and has much to say about spirituality, publishing, and how both have changed during his lifetime.
Des Moines author Wendy Delsol discusses Flock, the third and last book in her young adult fantasy series about human stork, Katla Leblanc and her boyfriend Jack. Based on Norse mythology, the popular trilogy has met with critical acclaim as has Wendy's debut adult novel, The McCloud Home for Wayward Girls.
Coming late to her writing career, Wendy studied writing at UCLA and at the Iowa Summer Writing Festival. She eschews the 'write-what-you-know' school of thought. "Write what you're interested in. Write what you want to know about. Have fun!" she advises. Clearly, she's having fun despite a grueling writing schedule that's enabled her to successfully publish and promote four books in the past three years. Tune in to learn how she does it.
Debut novelist and former Simon & Schuster editor Karen Thompson Walker wrote The Age of Miracles in the mornings before work. A graduate of UCLA and the Columbia MFA program and a recipient of the 2011 Sirenland Fellowship as well as a Bomb Magazine fiction prize, Walker sold this coming-of-age/dystopian novel in a seven-figure deal to Random House and 24 international territories.
Movie rights to the book have been optioned by River Road Entertainment, with Seth Lochhead slated to write the script and Bill Pohlad as producer. Despite her rapid rise to publishing superstardom, Walker remains levelheaded. Tune in to hear her thoughts on the creative process, publishing success, and books that inspire her.
Robert Wolf is the cofounder and director of Free River Press, a nonprofit publishing house currently headquartered in Decorah, Iowa. The press's motto is "Telling America's Story" and its primary mission is "to create an enduring collection of Americana, a literary mural, a mosaic, written primarily by people without literary ambition."
Besides encouraging ordinary people to record their stories, Robert has authored and edited many books, including An American Mosaic: Prose and Poetry by Everyday Folk and Jump Start: How to Write from Everyday Life, both published by Oxford University Press. Through Free River Press, he wrote and published The Triumph of Technique: The Industrialization of Agriculture and the Destruction of Rural America. In addition to leading writing workshops, Robert directs seminars and rural economic development projects through Free River Press.
Aired on Iowa Public Radio, his six-part commentary, Developing Rural Regional Economies won the Sigma Delta Chi Award for Best Radio Editorial of 1994. In 2007 a Free River Press book edited by Robert, Aver & Ahora (Yesterday & Today): Stories of Sant Fe and Northern New Mexico, won a New Mexico Heritage Preservation Award.
Tune in to learn Robert's sure-fire techniques for getting everyone writing and to hear his thoughts on improving rural economic conditions.
To highlight real social issues, Mary Vermillion writes a murder mystery series featuring fictional radio talk show host (and amateur detective) Mara Gilgannon. Each Mara Gilgannon mystery explores a different contemporary issue. The third and latest installment in the series, which is published by Regal Crest Enterprises, focuses on lesbian couples who seek the services of an artificial insemination clinic.
Set in Iowa, Seminal Murder was released in May of 2012. A Professor of English at Mount Mercy College in Cedar Rapids, Mary teaches a diverse range of courses, including Shakespeare, Creative Writing, and Law and Literature. Mary and her students often conduct book clubs with inmates at Anamosa State Penitentiary. She's also taken students on literary tours of England. Join us for a fascinating, wide-ranging discussion!
Kate McGuinness studied writing at the University of Southern California under the tutelage of Janet Fitch, who authored the Oprah Book Club selection "White Oleander." Kate pursued further studies in creative writing at the University of California, Los Angeles. Previously she'd earned a Juris Doctor degree from the University of San Diego. Before leaving the corporate world to tackle fiction-writing, Kate practiced law for 17 years at a major international law firm, where she was one of a handful of women to achieve coveted partnership status. Later, a Fortune 500 company recruited Kate to serve as its General Counsel. Today she's a full-time writer who advocates for women's rights. Her essays on women's issues have appeared in Forbes Woman, The Women's Media Center, Jezebel, Role/Reboot, Ms. JD, The Girls Guide to Law School, and Fem2pt0. Her first published novel, Terminal Ambition, a legal thriller that explores issues of sexual harassment and discrimination, was published by Kate's publishing company Two XX Press in 2012.
Michael Perry, who once worked as a roller skating Snoopy, is a humorist and the author of the best-selling memoirs Population 485: Meeting Your Neighbors One Siren at a Time, Truck: A Love Story, and Coop: A Year of Poultry, Pigs and Parenting. He's written for Esquire, The New York Times Magazine, Outside, Backpacker, Orion and Salon.com and is a contributing editor to Men's Health. Off Main Street is a collection of his essays, and his latest memoir is Visiting Tom: A Man, A Highway, and the Road to Roughneck Grace. Michael's also performed and produced two live audience humor recordings (I Got It From the Cows and Never Stand Behind a Sneezing Cow), and he performs regularly with his band the Long Beds. Michael and his family live in rural Wisconsin, where he remains active with the local volunteer rescue service. Look for him online at www.sneezingcow.com and tune in to KRUU for what's likely to be a lively, funny, and thoughtful discussion.
B.K. Loren has been a naturalist, large predator monitor for Colorado State Parks, professional brainstormer, assistant chef, ranch hand, furniture maker, UPS driver, and college professor while still managing to produce prose that reviewers deem visceral, lyrical, and incandescent.
Her writing has garnered Pushcart nominations, fellowships, and inclusion among Best American Spiritual Writing anthologies. BK lives with her partner, two dogs, and two cats in Colorado, where long, daily walks enrich her reflections on life. Join us for a discussion of her debut novel, Theft, categorized by writer Ann Pancake as “part environmental novel, part elegy to place, part family tragedy, part murder mystery.” A riveting combination!