Revisiting The ‘Last Interview’ Of Ernest Hemingway, Philip K. Dick And Nora Ephron

The Last Interview series features conversations with Ernest Hemingway, Nora Ephron and Philip K. Dick.

There’s so much to like about the classy Last Interview series, but one of the things I now like best about it is the heavenly trio who was recently added to the line-up: Ernest Hemingway, Philip K. Dick, and Nora Ephron.

Can you think of three writers who, on the face of it, would have had less to say to each other at a dinner party? Hemingway would have knocked back the booze and gone all moody and silent; the notoriously paranoid Dick would have been under the table checking for bugging devices and Ephron would’ve channeled what she called “the truly life-saving technique” taught to her by her Hollywood screenwriter parents to get through a rough time: the mantra, “Someday this will be a story!”

Excerpt from Maureen Corrigan’s article in NPR Books- read more

Alex Miller bids farewell to writing life in The Simplest Words

The Simplest Words is a novelty. It’s an antho­logy of a living writer’s work, a sort of Portable Alex Miller, but also a farewell to the writing life — as it’s been this far. Miller has said he has written his last novel, but he also declares in this new book that “life without writing is not only no fun for me, it is also life without meaning”.

The Simplest Words invites us to take stock at least as much of the person as of what he has written. The autobiographical and reflective pieces predominate, whereas excerpts from the novels are each only a couple of pages long.

Excerpt from Gerard Windsor’s book review in The Australian- read more

The Last Rotation

breath air illo.

The most memorable writing by physicians often comes about when the physician is knocked down by the very entity he or she strives to subdue: illness. Jerome Groopman’s The Anatomy of Hope is at its most intense and moving in the chapter where he reaches inward and describes his long struggle with back pain. Oliver Sacks’ wondrous late essays, in which he meditates on his own imminent end and the meaning of all that came before, glow with emotional resonance. In the hierarchical world of medicine, where doctors may have little experience with personal suffering and often remain emotionally disconnected from their patients, the doctor-writer who gets sick gains one benefit from suffering: a massively changed perspective.

Book review by Anna Reisman in The Slate Book Review- read more

Journalist Ruqia Hassan murdered by Isis after writing on life in Raqqa

Ruqia Hassan’s Facebook profile

Islamic State militants murdered a journalist who wrote about daily life in occupied Raqqa, having accused her of being a spy, activists have confirmed.

Ruqia Hassan, 30, was killed in September, but news of her death became widely known this week after Isis claimed on social media that she was still alive.

Writing under the pen name Nissan Ibrahim, Hassan’s posts described life for residents of Raqqa, Isis’s Syrian stronghold, and the frequent coalition airstrikes against the group.

Excerpt from Aisha Gani and Kareem Shaheen’s article in The Guardian– read more.

Why I Don’t Make New Year’s Resolutions

I haven’t made a New Year’s resolution in many years, because they started feeling like lines drawn in the sand: bold, dramatic, exciting.

Until the tide comes in and washes them away.


I see plenty of writers resolving this and that on line. But I don’t need New Year’s resolutions to motivate me in my career because New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day really aren’t any different from other days in my writing year. Well, except for the champagne, which might either slow me down a bit, or conversely give me some fresh ideas.

Excerpt from Lev  Rephael’s article in the Huffington Post- Read more