KUCI Fund Drive

Monday, August 29, 2022

Memoirist Amy Turner, author of "On the Ledge"

In 1957, when Amy Turner was four years old, her father stepped out onto the ledge of his high-rise hotel room and threatened to jump. More than 50 years later, Turner faced her own near-death experience when she was struck by a truck in a pedestrian crosswalk. Those two incidents, happening over half a century apart, led Turner to understand the legacy of anxiety and depression she inherited from her family, and the role of trauma in forming her identity.

Turner joined Marrie Stone to talk about her memoir, On the Ledge, as well as coming to writing later in life, how being an attorney impacted her writing, and how she knew when it was time to publish this book. Turner shares the struggles she had with structure, knowing what material to cut, and how to deal with time gaps in her story. She also discusses choosing She Writes Press (a small press who publishes women writers), foregoing the need for an agent, marketing her memoir and choosing a publicist.  

For more information about the show, as well as additional writing tips, prompts, and perks, visit our Patreon page here.

Download audio

(Recorded on August 27, 2022)
(Broadcast date: August 29, 2022) 

Music and sound design by Travis Barrett
Barbara DeMarco-Barrett: www.penonfire.com
Marrie Stone: www.marriestone.com
Travis Barrett: https://travisbarrett.mykajabi.com

Monday, August 22, 2022

Novelist Jacinda Townsend, Mother Country

Jacinda Townsend, author of the novel Mother Country (Graywolf), and Barbara DeMarco-Barrett discuss her new book and the setting of Morocco, alternating POVs, slavery, writing with the senses, and more. 

During her Fulbright year, on a layover in Morocco, Jacinda discovered the city of Marrakech and fell in love. Later that same year, on a trip to Northern Mali, she also first witnessed modern-day slavery: that incident inspired the research that eventually took her to Mauritania, where she met with escaped slaves and anti-slavery activists and began the work that would become her newly published novel, Mother Country (Graywolf, 2022).  Mother Country is told in the voices of an American woman struggling with infertility who kidnaps a young Moroccan girl, and the young mother, escaped from Mauritanian slavery, who loses her. Jacinda is also the author of Saint Monkey (Norton, 2014), which is set in 1950’s Eastern Kentucky and is a love letter to a Black community that has all but disappeared. Saint Monkey won the 2015 Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize for best fiction written by a woman and the James Fenimore Cooper Prize for that year’s best historical fiction. Saint Monkey was also the 2015 Honor Book of the Black Caucus of the American Library Association.



(Recorded via Zoom on July 28, 2022) 

Music and sound design by Travis Barrett 

Check out our Patreon page!

 Barbara DeMarco-Barrett: www.penonfire.com 
Marrie Stone: www.marriestone.com 
Travis Barrett: https://travisbarrett.mykajabi.com

Monday, August 15, 2022

Novelist Tom Perrotta, author of "Tracy Flick Can't Win"

Tom Perrotta joins Marrie to talk about his latest novel, Tracy Flick Can't Win. The author of nine previous works of fiction, Perrotta wrote Election, The Leftovers, Little Children and Mrs. Fletcher, all of which have been adapted to screen.

The conversation covers the #metoo movement and how feminism and the women's rights movement has evolved since Election came out 25 years ago. Perrotta discusses how he approaches politics in fiction, and what he failed to see coming in this country despite setting his novels in America's suburbs. He also shares insights into his writing process including the importance of drawing a distinct time-frame around your novel, writing from various points of view, how writing for the screen has helped his fiction, and so much more.

For more information about the show, as well as additional writing tips, prompts, and perks, visit our Patreon page here.

Download audio.  

(Recorded on August 11, 2022)
(Broadcast date: August 15, 2022) 

Music and sound design by Travis Barrett
Barbara DeMarco-Barrett: www.penonfire.com
Marrie Stone: www.marriestone.com
Travis Barrett: https://travisbarrett.mykajabi.com


Monday, August 08, 2022

Novelist Susan Straight, Mecca

Susan Straight, author of the novel, Mecca, which Michael Connelly called "a masterpiece," talks with Barbara DeMarco-Barrett about her new novel and how it came to be. Susan Straight was born in Riverside, CA, and still lives there with her family. She’s passionate about home, California, the Santa Ana River, the foothills and the deserts, and has been writing about southern California and the inland area for forty years. From her kitchen window, she can see the hospital where she was born, which her three daughters find kind of hilarious and pathetic; most days, she walks her dog Angel beside the Santa Ana River as she has since childhood, and then past the classrooms at Riverside City College, where she wrote her first short story, at 16, which is also kind of hilarious, but hopeful. She has written about the people of California for her new memoir, In the Country of Women, based on women’s stories told for five generations to Straight and her daughters, in driveways and trucks, at parks and funerals. She’s published that memoir, eight novels, and two books for children. Her short stories and essays have been published everywhere from The New YorkerThe New York TimesThe Los Angeles Times, and The Guardian to AltaThe BelieverMcSweeneysZoetropeReader’s DigestReal Simple, and Family Circle. She’s been awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship, the Lannan Prize for Fiction, a California Gold Medal for Fiction, and the Kirsch Award for Lifetime Achievement from the Los Angeles Times Book Prizes. 



(Recorded on July 12, 2022) 

Music and sound design by Travis Barrett 


Support the show on Patreon
Barbara DeMarco-Barrett: www.penonfire.com 
Marrie Stone: www.marriestone.com 
Travis Barrett: https://travisbarrett.mykajabi.com

Monday, August 01, 2022

Monique Roffey, author of "The Mermaid of Black Conch"

Monique Roffey is the author of six works of fiction and the 2012 memoir, With the Kisses of His Mouth. The British-Tobagonian author's latest book, The Mermaid of Black Conch, was released by a small press during the height of the 2020 pandemic. But, much like Roffey's outcast mermaid, the novel is enjoying a second life, winning prestigious awards, getting picked up by Knopf in the United States, and garnering praise in the press.

Roffey joins Marrie Stone to talk about the novel's unlikely journey, from her decision to launch a crowdfunding campaign in 2019 to the book's ultimate award-winning success. She also discusses writing compelling sex scenes, how Jungian analysis changed the trajectory of her writing, using television-style treatments for her manuscripts, why she needs 20 strong scenes before she begins writing, and so much more.  

For more information about the show, as well as additional writing tips, prompts, and perks, visit our Patreon page here.

Download audio.

(Recorded on July 29, 2022)
(Broadcast date: August 1, 2022) 

Music and sound design by Travis Barrett
Barbara DeMarco-Barrett: www.penonfire.com
Marrie Stone: www.marriestone.com
Travis Barrett: https://travisbarrett.mykajabi.com