Trying to Remember

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I’m trying to remember what my grandfather looked like when he was alive and I knew him, but all I have to work from is a photograph taken before my mother was born. Is he on his way to hellraise or to declare whatever sounded enough like undying love to get the yes and the ring? I’m imagining hard and writing hard and drawing hard but I can’t bring him back.

Powell’s Best Story Collections of the 21st Century (So Far)

landing-short-list-2014Praying Drunk was selected as one of Powell’s “Best Short Story Collections of the 21st Century (So Far),” keeping some good company: Junot Diaz, Roberto Bolano, Lorrie Moore, Wells Tower, Jhumpa Lahiri, Alice Munro, Karen Russell, George Saunders, Jess Walter, Lydia Davis, Ben Marcus, David Foster Wallace, and Donald Ray Pollock.

Some Unsolicited Advice for Young Writers

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Some unsolicited advice for young writers: There is probably something weird about you, about what you want to do, about how you want to do it. You’re probably not pulling it off yet. But the one piece of advice you should immediately ignore is the suggestion that you shear off the rough edges, regularize, de-complicate, become like whatever the advisor thinks everybody ought to be. Don’t do that. Be yourself. Be weird. Be singular. When the time comes, the thing that will lodge your work in the mind and heart of the readers for whom it will mean so much is the thing that right now is causing people to say the crippling words: No. Don’t. Can’t. Stop.

- Kyle Minor

New York Times Book Review, IPPY Bronze Medal, Reader’s Digest

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Three good things:

1. Praying Drunk was reviewed in the April 27 edition of the New York Times Book Review.

2. The book will be awarded the Bronze Medal for Short Fiction at the 2014 Independent Publishing (IPPY) Awards at BookExpo America on May 28 in New York City.

3. Dawn Raffel at Reader’s Digest pointed readers toward Praying Drunk in a feature titled “23 Contemporary Writers You Should Have Read by Now.”

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Radio Interview at KBOO Portland

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I talked with David Naimon at KBOO Portland last month, and the podcast is streaming now. Here’s the link.

New Interview in Buzzfeed

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I enjoyed this conversation with Michele Filgate, at Buzzfeed. We talked about sheep and goats, the lake of fire, plate tectonics, violence as not-metaphor, the Port-O-Lets at the circus with the good time numbers scrawled in black Sharpie marker, Vermeer in Bosnia, the defective replicant robot in a near-future Kentucky, the neurotoxin in the starfruit, slavery and the Southern Baptists, and the dangerous telling of the secrets.

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