Readers, when I was a kid my mom really hammered home the importance of always being kind to people, because even though it doesn’t always seem like it, it is a REALLY small world. Well, I have a small world story for you today. Today I’m talking to Nicholas Siegel, who filled out the What Should I Read Next guest submission form. He didn’t know I was in Louisville. Then when I went to mail him a microphone, I found out he lived practically right around the corner from me. And then when we started chatting, we discovered we had ALL KINDS of mutual friends, who—and he doesn’t know this—later said really nice things about him when I shared this small world story with THEM. So basically, my mom is always right.
Today Nicholas and I cover a lot of ground. MFA fiction is a phrase we’ve thrown around on the podcast before; today Nicholas and I dive into what exactly that means. We talk about literary magazines and day jobs and reading as a writer. We cover how to approach a book that intimidates you, and Nicholas’s argument for not giving up on a book that isn’t pushing your buttons. Plus, we talk about a lot of diverse books and stories that are perhaps best described as “just plain weird.”
Books mentioned in this episode:
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• The Harry Potter series, by J.K. Rowling
• The Chronicles of Narnia series, by C.S. Lewis
• 100 Years of Solitude, by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
• Get In Trouble, by Kelly Link
• Lincoln in the Bardo, by George Saunders
• A Gate at the Stairs, by Lorrie Moore
• Dark Places, by Gillian Flynn
• The Bird Market of Paris, by Nikki Moustaki
• NW, by Zadie Smith
• The Swimmer Among the Stars, by Kanishk Tharoor
• Future Home of the Living God, by Louise Erdrich
Also mentioned in this episode:
My book Reading People: How Seeing the World Through the Lens of Personality Changes Everything is coming this September 19! This is the story of how my long journey digging into 7 popular personality frameworks changed my life for the better, and how you can put those frameworks to work for yourself to make real, lasting change in your life, in your work, and in your relationships without going through quite so many hard knocks yourself.
To get yourself in the mood for all things personality, take our reading personality quiz. it’s fast and free and easy to take, and hopefully a lot of fun as well. And if you want to know even more, I made a class for you! We’ll spend an hour diving deeper into all nine types and give each set of readers their own book recommendations. The class is $15 — OR you can get it for free when you pre-order Reading People! You ALSO get a free audiobook download of the book when it comes out on September 19. This is a terrific deal and a rare opportunity to get the book in two different versions, PLUS my reading personality class at no additional cost.
Help me spread the word? Pre-order that copy for yourself, or a loved one. Ask your library to buy the book, and then check it out. (Circulation numbers matter!) Add Reading People to your to-read shelf on Goodreads, or an Amazon wish list. Recommend it to your fellow readers, and review it on your favorite sites. Thank you!
What do YOU think Nicholas should read next? Let us know in the comments!