Judy Bolton-Fasman joins Let’s Talk Memoir for a conversation on how writing about complicated relationships with generosity creates stories and characters that stay with readers, the case for speculative nonfiction, the impact fellowships have had on her writing, negotiating family members who appear in memoir, and don’t-miss-encouragement for all artists.
Also in this episode:
- How seeds of her memoir began in fiction
- What blew her work open
- Ronit mispronounces illustrative
ABOUT THE GUEST
Judy Bolton-Fasman is the author of ASYLUM: A Memoir of Family Secrets from Mandel Vilar Press. Her essays and reviews have appeared in major newspapers including the New York Times and Boston Globe, essay anthologies, and literary magazines. She is the recipient of numerous writing fellowships, including the Alonzo G. Davis Fellowship for Latinx writers at the Virginia Center for Creative Arts. She is a four-time winner of the Rockower Award from the American Jewish Press Association and a two-time Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net nominee. She recently received an honorable mention in Tiferet’s Creative Nonfiction Essay Writing Contest.
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ABOUT THE HOST
Ronit’s essays and fiction have been featured in The Atlantic, The Rumpus, The New York Times, The Iowa Review, The Washington Post, Writer’s Digest, American Literary Review, and elsewhere. Her memoir WHEN SHE COMES BACK about the loss of her mother to the guru Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh and their eventual reconciliation was named Finalist in both the 2021 Best Book Awards and the 2021 Book of the Year Award and a 2021 Best True Crime Book by Book Riot. Her short story collection HOME IS A MADE-UP PLACE won Hidden River Arts’ 2020 Eludia Award and will be published in 2022. She is host and producer of the podcasts And Then Everything Changed and The Body Myth.
More about WHEN SHE COMES BACK, a memoir.
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Judy Bolton Fasman’s articulate interview provides an illuminating explanation on the intersection of fiction and creative ( and therefore speculative) non fiction.
Those who read “Asylum” will appreciate Judy Bolton Fasman’s literary ethics as she speculates about her family’s secrets, but is always guided by a rigid respect for individual’s privacy. “Asylum” is indeed a memoir, but one propelled by layer upon layer of mysteries.
Thank you very much for tuning in. I so enjoyed my conversation with Judy and our conversation about kinds of memoirs, negotiating family members, and why generosity in our writing creates compelling narratives. So happy to have you as a listener!