18 episodes

A National Museum Celebrating American Writers

The American Writers Museum The American Writers Museum

    • Fiction
    • 4.8 • 5 Ratings

A National Museum Celebrating American Writers

    Episode 18: Adrianna Cuevas

    Episode 18: Adrianna Cuevas

    This week, AWM Assistant Director of Programming and Education, Sonal Shukla, chats with Adrianna Cuevas, debut author of the middle grade fantasy novel The Total Eclipse of Nestor Lopez.



    We hope you enjoy entering the mind of a writer.

    • 37 min
    Episode 17: Louie Pérez

    Episode 17: Louie Pérez

    We continue celebrating National Hispanic Heritage Month this week with singer-songwriter Louie Pérez, lead singer of Los Lobos, who chats with radio broadcaster Catalina Maria Johnson about his work and writing.



    We hope you enjoy entering the mind of a writer.



    EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS



    “Everything I’ve written has always come from the experiences I had growing up. You know, I couldn’t write about Brentwood. Or Beverly Hills. All I can write about is East LA and the experiences I had growing up there.”



    “There’s something about how your direct experience and your personal emotions can actually translate into other people’s lives. And that’s what I took on as a job as a songwriter.”



    “If I knew I was gonna live this long I would’ve bought more socks.”



    “There isn’t anything really specific about anything, it’s all subjective in a way. The things that make us happy are usually kind of relative to what’s going on in our lives.”



    “I wrote in a universal way so that if I’m talking about the wrong side of the tracks, it could be in East Los Angeles, it could be in Kansas City, it could be anywhere so that people can relate to certain things. That’s what I set out to do and I hope I accomplished it.”

    • 37 min
    Episode 16: Julissa Arce

    Episode 16: Julissa Arce

    This week, AWM President Carey Cranston sits down with bestselling author and immigrant rights advocate Julissa Arce to kick off National Hispanic Heritage Month.



    We hope you enjoy entering the mind of a writer. Listen to more episodes here.



    EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS



    “I’ve been very motivated and very inspired by young undocumented people now who are out fighting for their rights and are chanting, ‘Undocumented! Unafraid!’... When I was a teenager I did not have that power to say those things. I was very much afraid.”



    “I had always wanted to write and I had a really important story to tell, which is my story, my truth...I really needed to share my story. I can’t keep holding on to this.”



    “I did it all. Learned English, got a college degree, got a great job, paid taxes -- because undocumented people pay taxes. I mean I did everything and still it wasn’t enough. It just felt like the goal line was always moving, constantly moving.”



    “When I was growing up I never read a book that had a Latina protagonist. And especially I never read a book about an udocumented girl, ever. That made me feel really lonely because I just didn’t think my story was important because nobody was telling this story. And so I thought, if I can make a difference in just one child’s life because they read my book and something in my story resonates with them and they’re able to connect with it, then they can know that their stories are so important that people are writing books about them.”



    “I’ve always had really great examples of strong women in my life...My family has always been one of matriarchs and they always really encouraged me to be who I wanted to be.”

    • 40 min
    Episode 15: Michelle Duster

    Episode 15: Michelle Duster

    This week, AWM President Carey Cranston sits down with author and historian Michelle Duster who discusses the indelible impact and lasting legacy of her great-grandmother, Ida B. Wells.



    We hope you enjoy entering the mind of a writer. Listen to more episodes here.



    EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS



    “[Wells] felt the need to write her own autobiography because she was concerned that the work that she did would sort of be marginalized. So I really appreciate the fact that she decided to take control over her own story and her own narrative and chronicle it herself.”



    “Until we have a situation where there is truth and reality is represented in a way that is representative of the whole story of African-Americans, then we’re going to continue having these problems that we have in our country.”



    “For the writing that [Wells] did to be relevant today, in a way shows how things haven’t changed as much as we would hope. But it also ties the past to the present and I think that’s important for people to understand, that what is going on today is a continuum of what was going on post-Civil War.”



    “We are all descendants of the people who lived before us, so we are all affected by what happened before us.”



    “A lot of times people look at these historic figures as these larger-than-life figures, and they are to some degree, but they’re also human. And they have vulnerabilities. And I think it’s important for people to be able to see the human side of them.”

    • 41 min
    Episode 14: Isabel Ibañez

    Episode 14: Isabel Ibañez

    This week, AWM Program Director Allison Sansone sits down with Isabel Ibañez to chat about her Bolivian heritage, writing process, and her debut Young Adult Fantasy novel Woven in Moonlight.



    We hope you enjoy entering the mind of a writer. Listen to more episodes here.



    EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS



    “Home sort of felt like two places and I had to balance both of them. Those two identities, Isabel in Bolivia and then Isabel in the States, didn’t really converge until much later. Until I accepted both halves and accepted I am the daughter of immigrants and I am American but I am also Bolivian.”



    “Every story matters and there’s room for all of them.”



    “I’ve had family members who have gone onto the streets in Bolivia protesting and wanting a better future. And so, being here and not being able to be there, I wanted to write my own kind of protest, my own kind of rebellion.”



    “I got reacquainted with the process and joy of writing a story, the love-hate relationship.”



    “I think everybody wants to see themselves as a hero. And at least for me, I felt like if I’m writing this story someone else might read it with a similar upbringing—or a culture they can connect to because it’s adjacent—and think, ‘I feel so seen.’ There is something really neat about being able to read a story and connect and be able to say, ‘Wow, me too.’”

    • 23 min
    Episode 13: John Scalzi

    Episode 13: John Scalzi

    This week, we honor Ray Bradbury’s recent Centennial on August 22nd with more science fiction. The prolific writer John Scalzi talks about his novel The Consuming Fire, how he wrote it in just two weeks, and his affinity for wombats. Yes, wombats.



    We hope you enjoy entering the mind of a writer. Listen to more episodes here.



    EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS



    “I do the majority of my writing in the shower.”



    “One of the things they like to tell you about writers is that when a writer is looking out a window, they are writing. It’s not always true, sometimes we’re just looking at a squirrel.”



    “Now when I’m writing everyday I use software to block out the internet because quite honestly I can’t help myself.”



    “The muscle memory of writing novels was sufficiently advanced that things like pacing, things like ending chapters on cliff hangers, things like making sure the characters are responding believably to each other, those were all muscle memory.”



    “So much of what is writing is, is sitting there, just thinking about things.”

    • 48 min

Customer Reviews

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5 Ratings

5 Ratings

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