Onward Toward What We’re Going Toward
Ryan Bartelmay recently published his debut novel, which is based in central Illinois. This hour on Focus, he talks with host Jim Meadows.
If you were going to create a town with fictional characters who could live anywhere in the world, where would those characters go when they go home? Your first inclination may not be to create a story based in central Illinois, after all, there are much more exciting places to set a novel. But Morton native and author Ryan Bartelmay says he wouldn’t think to write about characters living anywhere else. This hour on Focus, he talks with host Jim Meadows about his debut novel, “Onward Toward What We’re Going Toward.” We’ll hear about why he writes about cultures in small towns in the Midwest and will hear about a set of characters who make a living working at a pumpkin canning factory.
This hour on Focus, we’ll talk about the best books to cozy up with inside as the cold marches on outside. Amber Castens and Elaine Bearden of the Urbana Free Library join host Jim Meadows and offer up a few holiday favorites, as well as a few new books out this year.
Read more to find a book list from today's show!
In her new book 'The Humanity Project" Jean Thompson confronts circumstances and questions plaguing many in the US in a post-recession era. This hour on Focus, host Jim Meadows talks with Thompson about her new novel, what inspired the story and why she thinks its an important story to tell.
This hour we'll meet Sean, a wayward carpenter whose bad luck turns even worse; Linnea, who has survived a school shooting and is living in California with a father she barely knows, and Mrs. Foster, a wealthy cat lady who starts "the Humanity Project" to help out a few whose luck has run out.
Read an excerpt of the book at the link below.
Leave a message after the beep… Make it 600 words or less. That’s the prompt NPR’s Three Minute Fiction gave listeners for Round 10 of their popular flash fiction writing contest. This hour on Focus, host Jim Meadows talks with Guy Raz, former host of Weekend All Things Considered and current host of the TED Radio Hour. Three Minute Fiction is Raz’s brainchild, and during the first half of this show, he tells us how surprised he is by the continued popularity of the contest and what his favorite stories are.
Then during the second half of the hour, we’ll talk with Kelly Strom. She manages adult fiction at the Champaign Public Library and will tell us more about new fiction titles for this spring.