Friday, March 16, 2007

Michele Morano

Michele Morano is the author of Grammar Lessons: Translating a Life in Spain.

I asked her what she has been reading. Her reply:
Great question! I'm constantly asking people what they're reading, since the answer gives a glimpse into the person's interior life and the engagment of his/her imagination at a particular point in time. I love the random connections that get made when I'm reading really disparate literature at once, and I always want to know what ingredients are stewing around in another person's mind.

Right now, as usual, I'm reading widely and randomly, with several books going at once. In fiction, I've just finished a brilliant new novel by James Cañón called Tales from the Town of Widows and Chronicles from the Land of Men, which is an imaginative, hilarious, and wise exploration of gender and utopian idealism in Colombia.

I'm also reading two genre-bending books, Dave Eggers' new novel/biography What Is the What and Danilo Kis' fictionalized memoir, Garden, Ashes.

In nonfiction, I've just read two marvelous memoirs, Nuala O'Faolain's Almost There and Katherine Russell Rich's The Red Devil, and I'm re-reading Nicholson Baker's hilarious U and I, along with essays by Joan Didion, Elizabeth Hardwick, and Thoreau.

Finally, the beside table is stacked with poetry collections by Wallace Stevens and Marianne Moore, along with the indispensable Calming Your Anxious Mind, by Jeffrey Brantley and Jon Kabat-Zinn. I'm one of those people who read books about meditation instead of actually doing it.
Michele Morano holds an MFA in Nonfiction Writing and a PhD in English from the University of Iowa. She is assistant professor of English at DePaul University.

Her essays have appeared in journals and anthologies that include Best American Essays 2006, the Georgia Review, the Missouri Review, Under the Sun, and The Fourth Genre: Contemporary Writers of/on Creative Nonfiction.

Honors and awards for her writing include an American Fellowship from the American Association of University Women, a Rona Jaffe Writers Foundation Award, the John Guyon Prize in Literary Nonfiction from the Crab Orchard Review, and a Prose Fellowship from the Illinois Arts Council.

Visit her official website.

--Marshal Zeringue