This American Life

“They’re People Like You and Me”: Talking With Debut Author Diane Cook About Short Story Collection ‘Man V. Nature’

In Diane Cook’s daring debut story collection, Man V. Nature, mothers lose children only to find them again, leaving both irrevocably altered; men cast adrift on a lifeboat suffer mid-life crises; and young, wild boys fight for survival in an untamed forest of obstacle courses. Each beautifully rendered story is full of peril and, often, tenderness, featuring regular folks attempting to navigate their uncanny worlds. Layered with pitch-black humor, each story is a fight for survival, and together they feel like notes sent from the edge of a place just familiar enough to rattle you and just strange enough to catch you off guard. Writer Karolina Waclawiak, also familiar with the edge of the surreal in her books How to Get Into the Twin Palms and the forthcoming Invaders, talked with Cook, a former producer for This American Life, about what went into writing Man V. Nature. … Read More

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“Do It Now”: Ira Glass’ Comforting, Terrifying Advice for Journalists

Earlier this year, the radio classic This American Life moved away from its longtime distributor, Public Radio International (PRI), to an independent model. Ira Glass, the show’s host and producer, has been doing more rounds in the press of late, discussing where the show is after 17 years, and where he is at this point as a journalist. The takeaway from the New York Times profile earlier this month was that Glass is, literally, dancing as fast as he can, working as both professional talking head (the bulk of his income comes from speaking appearances) and as the soul of a really good radio show when he’s not harboring dreams of Broadway. Whew! … Read More

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25 Things to Read, Watch, and Listen to If You Loved ‘Orange Is the New Black’

We’re still adjusting to the new model of Netflix-produced television, in which a whole season of a TV show is immediately available for anyone with an account to stream. In the case of the recently released and highly acclaimed prison dramedy Orange Is The New Black, we were all for this. Like many others, we devoured the 13 episodes of the first season within a few days and are ready for more. But it’s going to be a while before the next season, and one of the best features of this show was the hunger it instilled in us for more knowledge about both the world of the characters, the actors who play them and the all too real issues that their struggles are based on. We’ve put together a list of things you should definitely check out if you’re jonesing for the next season, from silly sitcoms comedies to harrowing investigative journalism and everything in between. … Read More

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Staff Picks: Flavorwire’s Favorite Cultural Things This Week

Need a great book to read, album to listen to, or TV show to get hooked on? The Flavorwire team is here to help: in this weekly feature, our editorial staffers each recommend the cultural object or experience they’ve enjoyed the most in the past seven days. Click through for our picks, and tell us what you’ve been loving in the comments. … Read More

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The 15 Best ‘This American Life’ Episodes (So Far)

It was nearly 20 years ago that Ira Glass, a Chicago public radio host, launched a unique radio show with a magazine format, in which various stories (or “acts”) with an interconnected theme were provided by reporters, storytellers, commentators, and the like. Originally titled Your Radio Playhouse, Glass changed the title shortly before the show was picked up for nationwide syndication to This American Life. And this Sunday, This American Life airs its 500th episode. In honor of the occasion, Flavorwire has (with great difficulty and discussion) selected the show’s 15 best episodes to date. (Maybe. They’ll probably be 15 completely different ones tomorrow.) … Read More

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Show Off Your Love For Public Radio With These NPR Temporary Tattoos

How else would you show your obsessive love for Ira Glass and Terry Gross and the rest of the NPR gang other than by permanently branding yourself a public radio devotee? And if that seems like a drastic move, why not go the temporary-tattoo route instead? The folks at NPR have got you covered: for 14 bucks you can buy a package of nine tattoos. It’s a much cheaper option than getting the real thing, and it’s great for those of us who change our minds too often to get inked. Check out the designs after the jump. … Read More

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