Chicago Tribune on Rust Belt Chicago

Belt’s latest is “Rust Belt Chicago: An Anthology,” a lively grab bag of essays, fiction and poetry that reads at times like who’s who of contemporary Chicago writers/residents. … taking on topics as varied as reparations for police violence, the barflies of Pilsen and the “myth of toughness in Chicago sports.” What emerges is not … Continued

Rust Belt Chicago events

Many thanks to all who came out to the big Rust Belt Chicago launch party at Chicago’s Hideout! And if you couldn’t make it, no worries: in the coming weeks we have a flurry of additional events and media appearances. Read on for details, and be sure to check back for updates. August 19: Rust Belt Chicago editor Martha … Continued

Rust Belt Chicago: Now for real and in the world for you

Rust Belt Chicago, the anthology of essays, poetry, journalism, and short fiction that I’ve been working on for 18 months is now in the world and available for all your summer reading needs. If you’re in Chicago, come celebrate with us on Sunday, August 13 at the Hideout.

Bedtime Stories

We’re bringing back A Memory Palace of Fear this fall — in bigger, better, and spookier form! — and more details on that will be available soon. But in the meantime, we’re dipping into the haunted well with a series of free workshops in West Side parks. I’ll be leading a guided storytelling process (ok, it’s … Continued

Once upon a world

So, I’ve been reviewing books semiregularly for the Tribune for a few months now, and it’s nice to be back in a deadline-making, word-count-hitting groove. Thus far I’ve stuck mostly to the food beat, but with this latest I got to branch out into ecology — and I liked it. JB Mackinnon is a former … Continued

Charles the not-so-excellent?

I’m on vacation but by the time a friend texted me this morning to see if I’d seen the news, I was already all over the latest devolution of the Charlie Trotter Story. You know the one I mean. The one in which he reportedly ordered some high school photography students to clean the toilets, … Continued

Back on the book beat

I’ve started reviewing books for the Tribune‘s (relatively) new lit supplement, Printers Row Journal.  As a pretty package, Printer’s Row is only available to subscribers, but the reviews can be accessed through individual links – or at least that’s the impression I have. In any case! The first one, on Lucy Knisley‘s Relish, a sweet … Continued

James Ellroy: Belligerent feminist?

Here’s a link to another recently published something: a review in Bookforum of James Ellroy’s new memoir, the Hilliker Curse. Subtitled “My Pursuit of Women,” it’s essentially that — a twisty travelogue through his romantic life. It’s not an easy ride, though there’s much to enjoy about it. And, interestingly, for all the torment love … Continued

A little love for some not-so-little greenhouses

“Some greenhouses grow vegetables. Some grow flowers. What grows at the two gleaming 2,500-square-foot greenhouses rising from a gray industrial district at South Canal Street and 14th Place is a bit more complex.” Really great story on the Greenhouses of Hope at PGM in this weekend’s Sunday Tribune Magazine. Though it does remind me how … Continued