This December 2-3 the University of Oregon will hold a symposium to honor the life and work of Ursula K. Le Guin. Tentative guest speakers are novelist Karen Joy Fowler, comic book writer Kelly Sue DeConnick, and Professor Brian Attebery, editor of the Library of America’s Le Guin series. I’ll be there to moderate a […]

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The recent “outing” of the Italian author, or authors, who work under the name Elena Ferrante has sparked a furious discussion in the literary world. For two decades no one knew who was writing Ferrante’s hugely popular books—until this month, when Italian investigative journalist Claudio Gatti announced that their creator was Anita Raja, a literary […]

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Sometime between October 9 and 14, 1797, Coleridge wrote the poem “Kubla Khan” but was interrupted before he finished it by “a person on business from Porlock.” So instead of America’s Columbus Day, the second Monday in October should really be Porlock Day. I propose we spend this day celebrating, not adventure, conquest, and exploitation, but…

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My profile of Ursula K. Le Guin is in this week’s New Yorker. The contributors’ page reveals something I’ve been keeping under wraps for a long time now: that I’m working on her biography. http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2016/10/17/the-fantastic-ursula-k-le-guin

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I’m thrilled to have a book review on 4Columns, a new site for arts criticism at its best and liveliest. I wrote about “The Art of Waiting,” by Belle Boggs, an empathetic and brave memoir on mothering, fertility, and the politics of assisted reproduction. Read it now at 4columns.org.

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The text of my talk for the Tiptree Symposium, given on December 4, 2015, just came out in the April 2016 issue of the literary science fiction journal The Cascadia Subduction Zone. My talk was about Alice Sheldon’s exchanges with her two closest pen-friends after her identity was revealed […]

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In my first draft of this review I said ‘Fates and Furies’ was both brilliant and boring. My editor said, “If it’s a bad book we shouldn’t run a long piece on it.” I said, “It’s not bad. I didn’t say it was bad. It’s original and terrifically inventive. It’s just got slow patches and […]

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