Are you sure you’re reading from cover to cover? Join self-proclaimed book nerd Nutan Rubinson as she chats with authors and explores what’s past “The End”. Listen every other week as authors share how the acknowledgments at the end of their book relate to the story, the characters, and their experience as a writer. There’s more to the book than just the story.
"True Biz" by Sara Nović, on Deaf culture and community
TRUE BIZ (adj./exclamation; American Sign Language): really, seriously, definitely, real-talk
In this episode of The Acknowledgments, I'm joined by Sara Nović, the author of "True Biz." Her novel introduces us to the students at the River Valley School for the Deaf. In this fictional story, the reader has the opportunity to explore the experiences, relationships, and unique aspects of the Deaf students at the school and the adults around them.
During our conversation, Sara shares her thoughts as an author who is Deaf and how her writing process has been influenced by her life experiences. Sara also opened up about the challenges and experiences she encountered during the book's publication.
Since Sara and I use different languages to communicate in that I speak English and she uses ASL, our conversation was translated by Kristin Steinmetz, an ASL/English interpreter, who volunteered her time to interpret our conversation. A full transcript is available here.
Connect with Sara: https://sara-novic.com.
"With Regrets" by Lee Kelly with a chat about mixing genres
In this episode of The Acknowledgments, author Lee Kelly talks about her genre-blend book, "With Regrets." The book was compared to a mix between “Big Little Lies” and “Bird Box,” witha story that revolves around four couples and their struggles when faced with an apocalyptic event. Lee shares how her own experiences as a parent influenced the book's themes, as well as how the COVID pandemic influenced her writing and impacted the events in the book.
Lee also highlighted how fascinated she has always been with genre blends,those that are not common mixes of genres, leading to the themes of her books. This episode also touchedf topics regarding parenthood, and how it affected, and even started, Lee’s writing process for “With Regrets.”
Future plans were also mentioned in this episode, with Lee having an upcoming book called “The Starlets,” a thriller-meets-hollywood type of novel. She also talks about her desire to explore more genres and write about them.
Connect with Lee Kelly: www.leekellyauthor.com
"First Course" by Jenn Bouchard, with a chat about rom-coms
In this episode of The Acknowledgments, Nutan chats with author Jenn Bouchard. They delve into her book "First Course" and her journey into the literary world. The novel, which revolves around the life of Janie Whitman, a young journalist in Chicago, has received several accolades, including being a finalist in the Women's Fiction category of the 2021 American Fiction Awards. Nutan and Jenn talk about her inspirations that show up in the book, including music and food (check out the recipes on her website)!
Along with a chat about the mutual love of rom-coms, the conversation further unravels the themes of sisterhood, parenting, and relationships in "First Course.” We also get a sneak peek into Jenn's upcoming project, "Palms on the Cape" and chat about Jenn's dual role as a high school social studies teacher. Listen in and hear the advice she would give her students on being a writer!
Connect with Jenn: https://jennbouchard.com/
"Governing Bodies" by Sangamithra Iyer, with a chat about connection
In this episode, we chat with Sangamithra Iyer about topics spanning from her unique education, connection to her family, and passion about the natural world around her. Although Sangu’s book, “Governing Bodies,” won’t grace our shelves for some time, she gives a preview by reading a beautifully written section of the book.
Throughout the conversation, Sangu shares her interest in animal welfare, environmentalism, and social justice through her work on Satya magazine, writing projects, and launch of the The Literary Animal Project.
Listen to this episode to hear about the many facets of Sangu – her experience at a primate sanctuary in Cameroon, thoughts on invisible labor, and exploration into ancient Tamil poetry.
Learn more about Sangu and her work:
Sangu’s Website https://sangamithraiyer.com/
The Literary Animal Project https://literaryanimal.substack.com/
More about the book, “Governing Bodies” https://www.whiting.org/content/sangamithra-iyer#/
"A House Full of Windsor" by Kristin Contino, with a talk about the royal family
In this episode of the Acknowledgements podcast, author Kristin Contino chats about her royal-themed book, “A House Full of Windsor.” Kristin shares her personal interest in the royal family and how it led to her book's concept which follows mother-daughter duo Debbie and Sarah. Debbie, who's a compulsive hoarder of Royal Family memorabilia ends up on a hoarding reality show with Sarah, who is a TV etiquette expert, and how it turns both of their lives upside down.
Kristin shares the major influences that shaped her writing interest and process, all deeply-rooted from her family, especially her mother and grandmother. She also talks about her early writing endeavors and her favorite city.
Kristin shared her process in writing "A House Full of Windsor" - where the idea originated, how she went on with her research, and how she reflected her personal l experiences in the book.
Join us in this episode as Kristin gives us a fun glimpse of her writing journey and her future writing projects.
Connect with Kristin: https://www.kristincontino.com/
"Loot" by Tania James, with a chat about the power of play
In this episode of the Acknowledgements podcast, host Nutan Rubinson sits down and chats with author Tania James to dig into her uniquely-themed book "Loot," a historical fiction, a heist novel, a romance, and a story about colonialism and artistic growth.
The story is set in 18th century South India and follows a young wood carver named Abbas who is tasked with creating a mechanical tiger as a gift for the ruler's sons. The tiger, known as Tipu's Tiger, is eventually stolen by British forces, leading Abbas on a journey to retrieve it and fulfill his dream of becoming a great artist.
In her acknowledgments, Tania discusses the influence of her family, particularly her father's broad curiosity and her mother's support, on her writing journey. She reflects on her childhood imagination and playfulness, comparing it to the wonder and creativity of children at play.
Tania looks into how her role as an associate professor of English influenced her writing process, and how she finds inspiration in the works she teaches and the discussions with her students.
Great conversations. In-depth yet candid conversations. I used to glance at the acknowledgments but now this podcast makes it so meaningful.
Insightful and original
I’m always looking for a good conversational podcast for my commutes. Love this podcast that touches on so many topics but centers around various authors’ writing experiences, and of course, the origin of their acknowledgements. Try it!
What an amazing conversation to have with authors, talking about their acknowledgments, but this podcast went so much farther getting to know the authors behinds some great books! Can’t wait for some more!!