I will be teaching Short Fiction: Master Class at the University of Toronto School of Continuing Studies beginning September 20th. If you have some experience writing short fiction and are jonesing to improve your craft, please come join us!
I am very pleased to be reading not once but twice at Toronto’s fabulous Word on the Street Sunday September 23rd. I’ll be at the Great Books Marquee at 11:30 for the early risers, and then at the Toronto Book Awards tent reading as part of Diaspora Dialogues sometime between 2 and 3:30 (specifics to follow). The Word on the Street is one of my very favourite festivals for its September sunniness (fingers crossed) and carnival atmosphere. I hope to see you there!
If you’re not in Toronto, or you think you might want to chat about the stories in Mad Hope with other readers, consider joining The Next Best Book Club on goodreads for their October discussion of the book. I will be on hand to answer questions electronically too!
The stories, he understands, won’t make the same splash. When he told a friend about them, “an image sprang to mind, which was the look on my grandparents’ faces when somebody told them a daughter was born. They were … happy,” he says, offering a disappointed half-smile. “If you’d seen their faces when a son was born, you would’ve known something they were happy about. Writing short stories in a culture like ours is like giving birth to girls in a Dominican conservative family in the fifties.” But that doesn’t mean he subscribes to the hierarchy. “As an artist, I know what I have to do. I have to fucking do this book. And I loved it. I love girl children.”
— Junot Diaz, in New York Magazine, on his new collection, This Is How You Lose Her