Portland Monthly Podcast

The folks at Portland Monthly put together a podcast with the writers of their Summer Reading issue – the fiction writers and poets talk about how they worked with the prompt, the space limit, and writing about this place we live.

Here’s the link to the Portland Monthly podcast page

Or click below for the full Soundcloud podcast

Summer Reading: New Story Up at Portland Monthly

A few months ago, Portland Monthly came to me and asked for a brand new short story with a few rules:

  • Set in the Pacific Northwest
  • Word count under 1,400 words
  • And, written to the theme of  “That Summer…”

The result is The Buried Forest, published online today, and the print version is out in the August issue of Portland Monthly. Inside, you’ll find new work from authors David Shafer and Diana Abu-Jabar, and poetry by Anis Mojgani, Elyse Fenton, and Samiya Bashir.

For the whole shebang of Summer Reading stories and poems, go here.

Enjoy the read, and happy summer!

E-book is out for People Like You

The PEOPLE LIKE YOU e-book is now available for purchase.

Here are a couple links, depending on where you like to buy your books:

Scribd

Bookshout

On Bookshout, it says the book can be read in about 3 and half hours, which is hilarious because it took me about twelve years to write. I guess I better get back to writing the next one…

xo

 

 

Small Press Picks & KLCC Reviews

Deep gratitude to Beth Castrodale of Small Press Picks, and Connie Bennett of the Eugene Public Library for their beautiful reviews of PEOPLE LIKE YOU.

Beth’s review can be found on her site, Small Press Picks, where she champions small presses (and short stories too!) doing good work.

Connie’s review can be read and listened to on the KLCC website here.

As I’ve said before in various places on my site and in other media, finding a reader that not only understands what you’re doing but loves it is just about the best thing out there for a writer. It is the ultimate kind of connection.

Thank you both so much.

People Like You Wins Balcones Fiction Prize

Balcones Logo

I am ecstatic to announce that PEOPLE LIKE YOU was awarded the 2015 Balcones Fiction Prize. There were some fantastic books on the shortlist with me, and I am humbled to be in their company.

Biggest of thanks to Joe O’Connell at Balcones Center for Creative Writing and to this year’s judge John Blair, author of the Drue Heinz Prize winning collection American Standard, who had this to say:
“Margaret Malone’s People Like You is a masterfully minimalist collection of lives lived poorly but with the best of intentions. Her stories are powerful, sad, and plain-spoken, and this debut collection takes the normative-yet-desperate circuits of the day-to-day that Bobbie Anne Mason and Frederick Barthelme brought to the forefront of American short fiction and makes them both new again and powerfully affecting.  These are marvelous and worthy stories, and very much deserving of recognition.”

I am totally blown away by this award, and really looking forward to coming down to Austin next Spring.

Thank you all so very much.

Best Day of My Literary Life – PEN Hemingway Ceremony

Today was an extraordinary day.

It started with a private tour of the Ernest Hemingway archives at the JFK Library. Wow. Super duper wow. (Sidenote: If you will be in Boston anytime before the end of the year, please go through this phenomenal exhibit.)

Then lunch at a table with, in a room with, some of the most talented American writers, who, it turns out, are also funny and charming and kind in a variety of ways.

Then the award ceremony where Joshua Ferris, presenter and a judge, along with Alexandra Marshall and Jay Parini, of this year’s PEN Hemingway award read aloud the citation from the judges for People Like You. I could not breathe as he read the following paragraph:

PEN Award Framed

And then I couldn’t breathe for two seconds after that either because, oh my sweet stars, did they just put the names Chekhov, Carver, Beattie, Moore and Twain in a sentence about People Like You? But I had no time to not breathe because I had to walk up onstage and accept the certificate and shake hands and pose for a picture and then somehow walk, without falling, all the way back to my seat, and the whole time my heart is not thumping along in my chest cavity the way it’s supposed to. No, it’s flailing, kicking, pushing, punching so loud I wanted to audibly ask it to shush please. But then I thought better of it and thanked my heart for reminding me what an undeniably extraordinary beautiful moment was happening… to me. Right that second.

Nothing left to do, then, but to simply take it all in.

My deepest gratitude to PEN New England; to judges Joshua Ferris, Alexandra Marshall, and Jay Parini; to the winner Ottessa Moshfegh, my fellow finalist S.M. Hulse, and honorable mention honorees Karim Dimechkie and Chigozie Obioma; to the crazy talented editor and publisher Mark Allen Cunningham of Atelier26 Books; to Diane Prokop, publicist extraordinaire; and most importantly to Brian Padian who kept the home fires burning (and the kids from burning the house down) so I could be in Boston, and he not only never once complained but told me again and again of how proud he was, of how much I deserved it, of how hard I’ve worked, of how much he loved me.

All of you, you changed my life today. Really.

Thank you.

OPB’s State of Wonder Keeps Me in Good Company

OPB’s April Baer put together this week’s State of Wonder show and included an interview with me and the sensational PEN Hemingway honor news in a show with some of the most talented folks I know of, including Thao & The Get Down Stay Down, Esperanza Spalding, and Sharon Olds.

Wow!

Listen to the full show here. 

Many thanks to OPB and April Baer and John Sepulvado for their tireless support of People Like You and for their enthusiasm at the PEN news. Thanks guys!!

PEOPLE LIKE YOU Receives PEN/Hemingway Honors

I am dumbstruck and elated to report that PEOPLE LIKE YOU was selected a Finalist in the PEN/Hemingway Award for first fiction.

***

From the PEN/New England site:

FINALISTS

The two PEN/Hemingway Award finalists are S. M. Hulse for Black River (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt) and Margaret Malone for People Like You (Atelier26).

***

 

Suddenly I find myself in the company of other past winners, finalists and honorable mentions… you know, authors like George Saunders, Edward P. Jones, Jhumpa Lahiri, Colson Whitehead, ZZ Packer, Jennifer Haigh, Marilynne Robinson, Ha Jin, Sherman Alexie, Junot Diaz, Yiyun Li, Lily King, Justin Cronin, Ben Fountain, Teju Cole, Mitchell S. Jackson, and many, many other mind-blowing writers.

Biggest of thanks to PEN New England and this year’s judges, Joshua Ferris, Alexandra Marshall, and Jay Parini.

And big, big congratulations to the winner Ottessa Moshfegh for her book EILEEN (Penguin), my co-Finalist S.M. Hulse for BLACK RIVER (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt), and honorable mention authors Karim Dimechkie for LIFTED BY THE GREAT NOTHING (Bloomsbury), and Chigozie Obioma for THE FISHERMEN (Little, Brown).

Lastly, never ending thanks to Atelier26 Books, the little engine that could, and Mark Allen Cunningham for making this impossible undreamed-of dream a reality.

To say I’m humbled doesn’t begin to do justice to what I feel today.

 

Here’s the full post at PEN/Hemingway Award

Here’s the full post at Atelier26 Books

Propeller Magazine Interview

Alex Behr and I went to have tea on a Saturday inside a now-defunct caboose in Southeast Portland.

The place is usually quiet and comfortable but for some reason on the afternoon of our interview, the place was crawling with high school kids hanging out there, talking and laughing and mostly on their phones, and then leaning over to show each other things on their phones.

It ended up being the perfect imperfect place to talk about writing and editing and character and craft and film and photography, and the result is this wonderful piece Alex has written for Propeller Magazine on PEOPLE LIKE YOU.

quote 1

You can read the full interview here at Propeller.