In this episode of The Archive Project, we highlight sections from three recent interviews shared through Literary Arts’ Long Distance podcast series. The Long Distance series was created during the COVID-19 pandemic as an online space where we can host conversational interviews with authors during a time when we are missing gathering in community—at bookstores and events—to hear from authors and talk about their books.
Here we share discussions with three women of color, all of whom released debut novels in the summer of 2020. Megha Majumdar’s A Burning features three protagonists all connected by a terrorist incident involving a train bombing in India. Jean Kyoung Frazier’s Pizza Girl is the story of the eponymous Pizza Girl, a pregnant 18-year-old, who falls into obsession with an older woman for whom she delivers pizza. Kelli Jo Ford’s Crooked Hallelujah is a novel-in-stories which depicts a family of proud, stubborn, Cherokee women as they sacrifice for those they love, amid larger forces of history, religion, class, and culture. Listen to their discussions around these new books as well as their writing crafts and art-making.
Megha Majumdar was born and raised in Kolkata, India. She moved to the United States to attend college at Harvard University, where she was a Traub Scholar, followed by graduate school in social anthropology at Johns Hopkins University. She works as an associate editor at Catapult, and lives in New York City. A Burning is her first book.
Jean Kyoung Frazier lives in Los Angeles. Pizza Girl is her debut novel.
Kelli Jo Ford is a citizen of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma. She is the recipient of numerous awards and fellowships, including the Paris Review’s Plimpton Prize, the Everett Southwest Literary Award, the Katherine Bakeless Nason Award at Bread Loaf, a National Artist Fellowship by the Native Arts & Cultures Foundation, and a Dobie Paisano Fellowship. Her fiction has appeared in the Paris Review, Virginia Quarterly Review, Missouri Review, and the anthology Forty Stories: New Writing from Harper Perennial, among other places.
Full interviews here:
Megha Majumdar: https://literary-arts.org/archive/long-distance-with-megha-majumdar/
Jean Kyoung Frazier: https://literary-arts.org/archive/long-distance-with-jean-kyoung-frazier/
Kelli Jo Ford: https://literary-arts.org/archive/long-distance-with-kelli-jo-ford/