The PEN Ten with Forrest Gander

Is the conscience the soul’s surveillance of the self? When are observations neutral? Does a writer, even without knowing, intend to “use” observations for the benefit of the writing… More

Justice

All of the cases that my father judged were nearly as small, as ridiculous, as petty. though a few were heartbreaking, or a combination of sad and idiotic, like… More

Sojourn in the Whale

It was not enthusiasm for the YWCA that brought the aspiring poet from Carlisle, Pennsylvania, to New York. As soon as she could politely break free, she headed straight… More

The King of Little Things

After marching for days, King Normous and his armies at last neared the land of the King of Little Things. This would not be a fair fight. And that’s… More

The PEN Ten with Sean Wilsey

Suddenly seeing myself as a writer-of-facts changed the way I looked at reality—so it was sort of a double-edged occasion. Guaranteed impediment to having a good time: knowing you'll… More

Walking on Water

My mother is the goddess of the seas. My fetus still floats in her womb. Perhaps I am a goddess, too. My mother guides the waves and the whirlpools.… More

The PEN Ten with Jean Kwok

After hearing from readers who told me how the book touched and influenced them, I realized that what I say does have an impact. Of course, I need to… More

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