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First Draft

Online only

In writing, a first draft is where creativity flows, a story takes root and the voice of a writer emerges. First Draft highlights the voices of writers as they discuss their work, their craft and the literary arts. This weekly online show independently produced and hosted by Mitzi Rapkin will primarily feature fiction and non-fiction authors along with occasional poets, screenplay writers, playwrights and songwriters. 

First Draft is a celebration of writing and the individuals who are dedicated to bringing their carefully chosen words to print as well as the impact writers have on the world we live in. 

First Draft: Esmé Weijun Wang

Feb 4, 2019

Esmé Weijun Wang is the author of the novel The Border of Paradise and a book of essays, The Collected Schizophrenias.  Her work has also appeared in Buzzfeed, LitHub, the The Toast among other publications.

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First Draft: Juliet Lapidos

Jan 21, 2019

Juliet Lapidos is the author of the novel Talent and a senior editor at The Atlantic.

Subscribe to the podcast on iTunes: http://apple.co/1HCVfjA 

First Draft: Christy Stillwell

Jan 14, 2019

Christy Stillwell earned a BA in English at the University of Georgia before moving west, first to Wyoming, then Montana. She holds an MA in Literature from the University of Wyoming, and an MFA from the Warren Wilson College Program for Writers. Her books include a chapbook of poetry called Amnesia and the novel, The Wolf Tone.

Subscribe to the podcast on iTunes: http://apple.co/1HCVfjA 

First Draft: Tommy Caldwell

Jan 7, 2019

Tommy Caldwell is the author of The Push and is an accomplished rock climber.  He made the first ascents of some of the United States' hardest sport routes  including Kryptonite (5.14c/d) and Flex Luthor (5.15a) at the Fortress of Solitude, Colorado. In January 2015, Caldwell and Kevin Jorgeson completed the first-ever free climb of the Dawn Wall of El Capitan in Yosemite National Park.

Subscribe to the podcast on iTunes: http://apple.co/1HCVfjA 

First Draft: Tom Barbash

Dec 17, 2018

Tom Barbash is an American writer of fiction and nonfiction, educator and critic. He is the author of the novels The Dakota Winters and The Last Good Chance, a collection of short stories Stay Up With Me, and the bestselling nonfiction work On Top of the World: Cantor Fitzgerald, Howard Lutnick & 9/11: A Story of Loss & Renewal.

Subscribe to the podcast on iTunes: http://apple.co/1HCVfjA 

First Draft: Leif Enger

Dec 10, 2018

Leif Enger was raised in Osakis, Minnesota, and worked as a reporter and producer for Minnesota Public Radio for nearly twenty years. His novels include Virgil Wander, Peace Like A River, and So Brave, Young, and Handsome.

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First Draft: RO Kwon

Dec 3, 2018

R.O. Kwon is the author of The Incendiaries, which was an American Booksellers Association Indie Next #1 Great Read and Indies Introduce selection, and it is being translated into four languages. Her writing has appeared in The Guardian, Vice, BuzzFeed, Noon, Time, Playboy, and elsewhere.

Subscribe to the podcast on iTunes: http://apple.co/1HCVfjA

First Draft: Cai Emmons

Nov 26, 2018

Cai Emmons is the author of the novels His Mother’s Son and The Stylist and Weather Woman, about a meteorologist who discovers she has the power to change the weather.

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First Draft: Sarah Stone

Nov 19, 2018

Sarah Stone’s new novel is called Hungry Ghost Theater. Her previous novel, The True Sources of the Nile, has been taught in courses on literature, ethics, and the rhetoric of human rights. She’s the co-author, with her spouse and writing partner Ron Nyren, of the textbook Deepening Fiction: A Practical Guide for Intermediate and Advanced Writers.

Subscribe to the podcast on iTunes: http://apple.co/1HCVfjA

First Draft : Karen Bender

Nov 12, 2018

Karen Bender is the author of the short story collections Refund and The New Order, the novels Like Normal People and A Town of Empty Rooms and is co-editor of Choice.

Subscribe to the podcast on iTunes: http://apple.co/1HCVfjA

First Draft: Christina Dalcher

Nov 5, 2018

Christina Dalcher is a linguist, teacher, and writer, based in Northfolk, Virginia. She earned her doctorate in theoretical linguistics from Georgetown University. Her short stories and flash fiction have been published in numerous journals. Her debut novel is entitled Vox.

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First Draft: Daniel Mason

Oct 29, 2018

Daniel Mason is a physician and author of The Piano Tuner, A Far Country, and The Winter Soldier.  A Clinical Assistant Professor in the Stanford University Department of Psychiatry, his research and teaching interests include the subjective experience of mental illness and the influence of literature, history, and culture on the practice of medicine. 

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First Draft: Beth Macy

Oct 22, 2018

Beth Macy is a journalist and author.  Her latest book, Dopesick, focuses on one of America's epicenters for the opioid crisis.  The book follows distressed communities in Central Appalachia to wealthy suburbs and the people inhabiting them.  Her other books include Factory Man and Truevine.

Subscribe to the podcast on iTunes: http://apple.co/1HCVfjA

First Draft: Ben Marcus

Oct 8, 2018

Ben Marcus is the author of five books of fiction: The Age of Wire and String, Notable American Women, The Flame Alphabet, Leaving the Sea, and Notes from the Fog. He is the editor of The Anchor Book of New American Short Stories and New American Stories. Since 2000 he has taught on the faculty at Columbia University’s School of the Arts.

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First Draft: Bernice McFadden

Oct 1, 2018

Bernice McFadden is the author of nine critically acclaimed novels including Sugar, Loving Donovan, Nowhere Is a Place, The Warmest December, Gathering of Waters (a New York Times Editors’ Choice and one of the 100 Notable Books of 2012), Glorious, and The Book of Harlan (winner of a 2017 American Book Award and the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work, Fiction). She is a four-time Hurston/Wright Legacy Award finalist, as well as the recipient of three awards from the BCALA. Praise Song for the Butterflies is her latest novel.

First Draft: Amitava Kumar

Sep 24, 2018

Amitava Kumar is a writer and journalist. He was born in Ara, and grew up in the nearby town of Patna, famous for its corruption, crushing poverty and delicious mangoes. Kumar is the author of several books of non-fiction and two novels. He lives in Poughkeepsie, in upstate New York, where he is the Helen D. Lockwood Professor of English at Vassar College. His latest novel is called Immigrant, Montana.

Subscribe to the podcast on iTunes: http://apple.co/1HCVfjA

First Draft: Gary Shteyngart

Sep 4, 2018
Rolf Potts

Gary Shteyngart is the author of the memoir Little Failure and the novels Super Sad True Love Story, Absurdistan, The Russian Debutante’s Handbook, and Lake Success. His work has been translated into twenty-six languages. Shteyngart lives in New York City and upstate New York.

Subscribe to the podcast on iTunes: http://apple.co/1HCVfjA

First Draft: Francine Prose

Aug 27, 2018

Francine Prose is the author of twenty-one works of fiction, including Mister Monkey; the New York Times bestseller Lovers at the Chameleon Club, Paris 1932; A Changed Man, which won the Dayton Literary Peace Prize; and Blue Angel, a finalist for the National Book Award. Her works of nonfiction include Anne Frank: The Book, The Life, The Afterlife, and the New York Times bestseller Reading Like a Writer.  Her newest book is the non-fiction book What to Read and Why.

First Draft: Joe Mungo Reed

Aug 13, 2018

Joe Mungo Reed was born in London and raised in Gloucestershire, England. He has a master’s in philosophy and politics at the University of Edinburgh and an MFA in creative writing at Syracuse University, where he won the Joyce Carol Oates Award in Fiction. He is the author of the novel, We Begin Our Ascent, and his short stories have appeared in VQR and Gigantic and anthologized in Best of Gigantic.

Subscribe to the podcast on iTunes: http://apple.co/1HCVfjA

First Draft: Stephanie Feldman and Nathaniel Popkin

Aug 6, 2018

Stephanie Feldman and Nathaniel Popkin are co-editors of the anthology Who Will Speak for America?  In this lively collection, 40 novelists, essayists, poets, and artists confront the political division heightened by the Trump presidency and imagine a just future for the USA.

Subscribe to the podcast on iTunes: http://apple.co/1HCVfjA

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