Anya Achtenberg on Write On! Radio KFAI-FM

Joining us is Anya Achtenberg, who will be talking about her new novel Blue Earth, a beautifully written book that weaves together inherited grief from many conflicts, including the Minnesota farm crisis of the 1980’s and the 1862 Dakota war.  Jay Gabler of the Twin Cities Daily Planet says, “Blue Earth gives the James Michener treatment to a pivotal, and profoundly tragic, event in Minnesota History.”

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Anya Achtenberg
Anya Achtenberg

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Blue Earth

Christine Stark – NICKELS: A Tale of Dissociation

Authors Airwaves captured author Christine Stark’s performance live at Patrick’s Cabaret in Minneapolis, MN on September 9th and 10th 2011.  Christine read chapters from her new book NICKELS: A Tale of Dissociation.Nickels follows a biracial girl named “Little Miss So and So”, from age 4-1/2 into adulthood. Told in a series of prose poems, Nickels’ lyrical and inventive language conveys the dissociative states born of a world formed by persistent and brutal incest and homophobia. The dissociative states enable the child’s survival and, ultimately, the adult’s healing. The story is both heartbreaking and triumphant. Nickels is the groundbreaking debut of Minneapolis-area author
and artist Christine Stark.

Christine Stark

“Christine Stark has crafted a language and a diction commensurate with the shredding of consciousness that is a consequence of childhood sexual abuse. She brings us a wholly original voice in a riveting novel of desperation and love. Every sentence vibrates with a terrible beauty. Every sentence brings the news.”–Patricia Weaver Francisco, author of Telling: A Memoir of Rape and Recovery“To be taken into the mind of a child can be an enchanting
adventure, but to be taken into the mind of a child who is
abused, confused, and taken for granted is a lingering, livid
journey. I applaud her fortitude to bring an olden–too long ignored–truth out of the darkness with blazing, innovative light.”–MariJo Moore, author of The Diamond Doorknob

“In Nickels, Christine Stark, powerfully portrays the story of abuse and its impact on our lives. When this beautifully written and compelling story leaves, you are left wanting more. It’s riveting; a book that will capture you from the beginning and carry you through the end. Everyone should read this book.”

–Olga Trujillo, author of The Sum of My Parts

Nickels: A Tale of Dissociation

Sherry Quan Lee – Live at University of Minnesota

On September 17th, 2008 Sherry Quan Lee gave a reading from her new book How to Write A Suicide Note: serial essays that saved a woman’s life as well as excerpts from other pieces of her work at the University of Minnesota Bookstore. We hope you will enjoy this rare chance to listen to the author read her own work on Authors Airwaves.
How to Write a Suicide Note examines the life of a Chinese/Black woman who grew up passing for white, who grew up poor, who loves women but has always married white men. Writing has saved her life. It has allowed her to name the historical trauma–the racist, sexist, classist experiences that have kept her from being fully alive, that have screamed at her loudly and consistently that she was no good, and would never be any good-and that no one could love her. Writing has given her the creative power to name the experiences that dictated who she was, even before she was born, and write notes to them, suicide notes.Sherry Quan Lee believes writing saves lives; writing has saved her life.

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Anya Achtenberg – Live at University of Minnesota

On September 17th, 2008 Anya Achtenberg gave a reading from her new book The Stories of Devil-Girl as well as excerpts from other pieces of her work at the University of Minnesota Bookstore.  We hope you will enjoy this rare chance to listen to the author read her own work on Authors Airwaves.
Devil-Girl is a storyteller smaller than a stain and larger than life, a mythic figure roaming the globe. Born into Brooklyn housing projects and the nightmares of her immigrant family, she becomes a runaway in the human marketplace of the streets of New York. Accompanied by her sense of outrage and sense of humor, ghosts of the ancestors and her prophetic vision, she moves from silence through rage into deep alliance with the marginalized.”Devil-Girl’s stories are all of our stories, all of the ‘discarded and demonized’, all of us who have had to fight to survive, to fight to tell our truths. Achtenberg’s wise survivor, Devil-Girl, is witness and seer, and her words are sustenance. There is much pain in this book, much wisdom, and a kind of beauty that sears itself into memory, a fierce beauty that is as necessary as air. Read this book.”
-Lisa D. Chave, Author of Destruction Bay; In An Angry Season

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Issam Jameel – Iraq Through a Bullet Hole

Issam Jameel reads Chapter 1 from his new  autobiographical memoir Iraq Through A Bullet Hole.  This book describes Issam’s fateful journey to his homeland of Iraq in 2005 after a decade in exile.  From the relative safety of Jordan, where he worked for an opposition radio station under the watchful eyes of Saddam’s spies, he travels by car to Baghdad visit family and friends.He longs to see his mother country, but the immediate reason is to grieve his nephew’s untimely death at the hands of American forces while guarding an Iraq parliament member from insurgent attacks. Jameel enters a Kafkaesque nightmare of assassinations, kidnapping, and explosions. American soldiers are everywhere in the streets and ready to shoot whenever they feel danger is close. He sees the formerly
secular civil society fairly well replaced by vehement sectarianism, intolerance, and ignorance. Basic human needs have become a endless daily struggle amidst the shards of infrastructure.Tasks we all take for granted, such as selling a house or getting a job are fraught with peril as old scores continue to be settled on religious, ethnic, and political fronts. Everywhere he turns, people are desperate to leave but fear for the worst. After returning safely, he started to record the events he had seen, trying to be honest and impartial to unfold the Iraqi problem to the western community. This is his story.
Issam Jameel
Issam Jameel was born in Baghdad in 1954. He obtained a bachelor’s degree in theatrical arts from the Academy of Fine Arts in Baghdad in 1978. In 1980, he spent his compulsory army services working for Al-Qadesia, a daily newspaper of the Iraqi army. He explored the amazing world of writing when he offered articles in theatrical criticism. After several years he became the dependable theatrical critic in Al-Thawra, the main official newspaper in Iraq during the years 1981-1985. His first book, which included two plays about war, had been published in 1983 by the main Iraqi governmental publishing house. His first play, The Memory of a Dead Man, had been directed by himself with an experimental theater belonging to a national theater group in Iraq. Three of his plays have been directed by Iraqi directors for the national theater group in Baghdad during 1985 to 1991, while two other plays have been directed by himself at the experimental theater in Baghdad in 1989 and 1993.During his long residence in Jordan, he converted to Christianity before migrating to Australia in 2002, where he now resides.

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