Live Wire with Luke Burbank
Portland Book Festival Edition with Saeed Jones, Kristen Arnett, Casey Cep, Ages & Ages, and more!
Sun, Nov 10 at 12pm
Saeed Jones is coming out fighting with his brand-new, searing memoir “How We Fight For Our Lives.” Jones writes at the intersection of sex, race, and power as he crafts his coming-of-age story as a young, black gay man from the South battling to find where he fits in. Through a series of vignettes that blend poetry and prose, Jones crosses the American landscape as he tells his story in sensual, beautiful writing. He is also the author of “Prelude to a Bruise,” winner of the 2015 PEN/Joyce Osterweil Award for Poetry. He previously worked as the co-host of Buzzfeed’s morning show, “AM to DM,” and served as the LGBTQ and Culture editor for the site. Jones’ work reflects the fight to become our true selves, and that’s a fight we definitely want to pick.
Kristen Arnett is living the life. A queer fiction and essay writer, her first novel, “Mostly Dead Things,” published by Tin House Books, debuted on the New York Times bestseller list in the summer of 2019. The tale of what happens to a family and their taxidermy shop after a loss, the darkly hilarious story of love and tragedy resonated with readers across the country. She's a columnist for Literary Hub and her work has either appeared or upcoming at North American Review, TriQuarterly, Electric Literature, The Guardian, Salon, The Rumpus, and elsewhere. Arnett’s vivid and deeply felt prose and essays make you feel lucky she’s chosen the writing life.
Casey Cep pulls back the curtain and shows you the true story behind a beloved author’s struggle to follow up her first book in her captivating read, “Furious Hours: Murder, Fraud, and the Last Trial of Harper Lee.” Cep’s New York Times-bestselling book tracks “To Kill a Mockingbird” author Harper Lee as she attempts to write a true-crime account of the complicated Alabama case of Reverend Willie Maxwell. A writer from the Eastern Shore of Maryland, the Harvard grad and Rhodes Scholar has written for The New Yorker, The New York Times, and The New Republic, among others. “Furious Hours” may be her first book, but Cep’s jaw-dropping talent for writing a hybrid courtroom reporting-thriller-bio-commentary about one of our most beloved authors will make you eagerly await her next one.
Ages and Ages have been in musical group therapy for the past three years. Following their acclaimed 2016 album “Something to Ruin,” Tim Perry and Rob Oberdofer (along with drummer and co-producer Evan Railton) started to work together on new music twice a week. The meetings also helped them deal with their uneasy feelings and anxiety in regards to the news, confronting complicated, dark questions while remaining optimistic. This became the core of their new album, “Me You They We.” The ten song LP shines a light through the murkiness and highlights the band’s glistening sound and perceptive lyrics. Working it out worked – and Ages and Ages has a new album that feels like a true statement of purpose for the band.