Archives: Podcast

S4 E12 – Get in the Cage

I'll Find Myself When I'm Dead
I'll Find Myself When I'm Dead
S4 E12 - Get in the Cage
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For our Season 4 finale, we watched the new Nicholas Cage movie The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent (Elena’s idea) and talked about it for almost three hours. Also: acting methods, Michael Syrah, Bob Dylan, email signatures, Goodreads, bad date movies, David’s recent experience on a TV set, the Nic Cage of sports, knuckleballs, Nick Cave, Elena sings some hits, Dracula, Elena’s going on tour, Justin drops his laptop near the end, Elvis hair, and (lots) more!

S4 E11 — Revision

I'll Find Myself When I'm Dead
I'll Find Myself When I'm Dead
S4 E11 -- Revision
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This week we’re talking about revision. We discuss a chapter of Stephen Koch’s The Modern Library Writer’s Workshop that’s one of the better nuts-and-bolts revision guides, common drafting issues, the role of feedback and workshops, why revision is often taught poorly or not at all, and what our processes look like. Also: our recent appearance on a more professional podcast, some sports talk, Mary Karr, Ecco Homo, Van Halen, and more!

Some things we mention:

Book Fight! – https://bookfightpod.com 

Justin’s interview with Tim States for Words & Sports: https://www.wasquarterly.com/offseason/tailgating-with-justin-st-germain# 

Stephen Koch’s The Modern Library Writer’s Workshop (we read Chapter 7: Working and Reworking): https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/94583/the-modern-library-writers-workshop-by-stephen-koch/

S4 E10 – March Faxness: the Final Four

I'll Find Myself When I'm Dead
I'll Find Myself When I'm Dead
S4 E10 - March Faxness: the Final Four
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This week we’re checking in with March Faxness again, now that the field has narrowed to four songs/essays (including David’s!). We discuss the recent games, preview the semifinals, and make our picks for who’s going to win. Also: Elena takes up a new instrument, we’ve met a lot of Xness writers since our last episode—one of whom, Tim States, we include a mini-interview with—some AWP Philadelphia/Tucson Book Fest talk, a long tangent about the worst movies we’ve ever seen, David’s day on the Indigo Girls tour bus, Neil Gaiman’s wardrobe, and more!

Some things we mention:

All March Faxness essays are available on the site: http://marchxness.com 

Follow March Xness on Twitter: https://twitter.com/marchxness 

Follow David on Twitter: https://twitter.com/elturk7 

Follow Tim States on Twitter: https://twitter.com/epmornsesh

March Faxness Round 1

I'll Find Myself When I'm Dead
I'll Find Myself When I'm Dead
March Faxness Round 1
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This week we’re talking about possibly the best essay-related week of the year: March Faxness round 1, in which 64 essays about cover songs faced off in a tournament. We try to touch on our favorites—although we probably missed some—and discuss the bracket and upcoming games. Also: Elvis Costello gets spicy on Twitter, we all get spicy about the Mountain Goats, dork rodeos, community college bowl, Denry’s back(!), Drake’s reading list, Kamp Kilmer, Justin tries to understand NFTs, Elena explains the Chicken Van, some country music talk, is the shopping cart a dance?, roof-raising techniques, and Elena does mini-covers of Evan Dando, Snow’s “Informer,” and Tom Jones’ “Sex Bomb.”

Some things we mention:

All March Faxness essays are available on the site: http://marchxness.com 

Follow March Xness on Twitter: https://twitter.com/marchxness 

March Faxness Spotify playlist: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/3rNwexRZ9dmA0nvssrPlDK 

Denry’s March Fadness essay on Snow’s “Informer”: http://marchxness.com/snowvsedwinmccain

S4 E8 – March Faxness Preview

I'll Find Myself When I'm Dead
I'll Find Myself When I'm Dead
S4 E8 – March Faxness Preview
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This week we’re talking about the real reason this podcast exists: the annual March Xness essay/song tournament, which is about cover songs this year.

Some things we mention:

March Faxness (and the previous tournaments): http://marchxness.com 

Follow March Xness on Twitter: https://twitter.com/marchxness 

March Faxness Spotify playlist: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/3rNwexRZ9dmA0nvssrPlDK 

Joan Jett’s “Crimson & Clover”: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cXFra7gjElw 

Tiffany’s “I Think We’re Alone Now” video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w6Q3mHyzn78 

The Cover Me episode about “I Think We’re Alone Now”: https://covermepodcast.podbean.com/e/i-think-were-alone-now-tommy-james-and-the-shondells/

S4 E7 – There’s No I in Essay

I'll Find Myself When I'm Dead
I'll Find Myself When I'm Dead
S4 E7 - There's No I in Essay
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This week we’re talking about essays that aren’t in the first person. Elena picked one example, Eliot Weinberger’s “The Rhinoceros,” and Justin picked another, an excerpt from Claudia Rankine’s Citizen. Also: the new Macbeth, the acting role Elena was recently offered, Elena recites some Lady Macbeth, more March Xness previewing, some Arnold Palmer talk, and a mini-spelling bee. 

Some things we mention:

Eliot Weinberger’s “The Rhinoceros”: http://www.rhinoresourcecenter.com/pdf_files/120/1206206707.pdf

Claudia Rankine’s Citizen: https://www.graywolfpress.org/books/citizen 

Brian Doyle’s “Joyas Voladoras”:

S4 E6 – The Pushcart Prize 2022

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I'll Find Myself When I'm Dead
S4 E6 - The Pushcart Prize 2022
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This week we’re talking about this year’s edition of the Pushcart Prize anthology. We compare it to Best American, discuss the important differences, and focus on a few selections from the anthology. Also: Build-A-Bears, Paint & Wine, Burt Reynolds, male pattern baldness, egg donation, BoJack Horseman, some March Faxness warmup talk, and more!

Some things we mention:

The Pushcart Prize:

http://www.pushcartprize.com

March Faxness:

http://marchxness.com

Kathryn Schulz’s essay on The Great Gatsby (suggested in a listener email): https://www.vulture.com/2013/05/schulz-on-the-great-gatsby.html

“Open House” by Jeremiah Moss:

“Gutted” by Cathryn Klusmeier:

https://agnionline.bu.edu/essay/gutted

S4 E5 – Best American Essays 2021

I'll Find Myself When I'm Dead
I'll Find Myself When I'm Dead
S4 E5 - Best American Essays 2021
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This week we’re talking about this year’s edition of Best American Essays. We compare it to previous years (spoiler: this one is a bummer), discuss the new subgenre of pandemic essays, and focus on a few selections from the anthology. Also: David makes us a pandemic cocktail, Justin’s dog makes a few barky cameos, we (well, one of us) question the entire Best American Essays enterprise, and we do a year-end lightning news/round. See you next year!

(Note: we don’t mention Joan Didion’s death because it occurred the morning after we recorded, but if you’d like to hear some of our previous thoughts on Didion, we did an episode about her latest book earlier this year: http://www.essaypodcast.com/s3-e2-didion-on-writing/)

Some things we mention:

Best American Essays 2021:

https://www.hmhbooks.com/shop/books/the-best-american-essays-2021/9780358381754

Assay’s interview with Robert Atwan, the series editor of Best American Essays:

https://www.assayjournal.com/interview-with-robert-atwan-31.html

Alexander Chee’s link to BAE 2022 submission guidelines:

S4 E4 – The Address Book

I'll Find Myself When I'm Dead
I'll Find Myself When I'm Dead
S4 E4 - The Address Book
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This week we discuss our first listener pick, Sophie Calle’s “The Address Book,” which was suggested by Will Howard. Also: lots of “Succession” talk (including a couple of potential spoilers), John McPhee’s inscrutable diagrams, more Chekhov, the kids’ music these days, whether we’d want to be address-booked, what we’d say about each other if it happened, Elena makes up a song about the 1985 Chicago Bears, and more! (Also, send us your favorite essays of 2021 for Pushcart nominations.)

Some things we mention:

Sophie Calle’s The Address Book:

http://sigliopress.com/book/the-address-book/ 

David Searcy’s book of essays, Shame and Wonder: https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/221652/shame-and-wonder-by-david-searcy/

The Jeremy Strong profile from the New Yorker:

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2021/12/13/on-succession-jeremy-strong-doesnt-get-the-joke

JM Tyree’s The Counterforce:

The sad and strange case of the Wanda Tinasky letters, which apparently were not written by Pynchon:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wanda_Tinasky

John Vaillant’s book The Tiger:

https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/182226/the-tiger-by-john-vaillant/

S4 E3 – Essays About Feelings

I'll Find Myself When I'm Dead
I'll Find Myself When I'm Dead
S4 E3 - Essays About Feelings
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This week we discuss our feelings, how to write about feelings, our feelings some more, and two essays about feelings: Jerald Walker’s “Breathe,” and Chris Offutt’s “Trash Food.” (Sorry about the rough audio quality, we had some tech issues this week.)

Jerald Walker’s “Breathe” in New England Review: https://www.nereview.com/vol-40-no-3-2019/breathe/ 

Chris Offutt’s “Trash Food” in Oxford American: https://main.oxfordamerican.org/magazine/item/550-trash-food

Allen Gee’s “Old School,” the other essay about James Alan Macpherson that we mention. (Excerpt only):

Allen Gee’s “Old School,” the other essay about James Alan Macpherson that we mention. (Excerpt only):https://blog.pshares.org/index.php/old-school-by-allen-gee/

Stephanie Soileau’s book of short stories, Last One Out Shut Off the Lights: https://stephaniesoileau.com/last-one-out-shut-off-the-lights-2