Welcome to the Literary Roadhouse Podcast and reading community. We are a diverse group of readers who know the truth; literary fiction isn’t boring, it isn’t stuffy either. Literary fiction stands the test of time because it touches on the deepest parts of what makes us human. Literary fiction is important and fun. It sparks tears, arguments and yes, even revolutions.
We are evangelists and fans of this art, every week we have a rowdy old time discussing a wide diversity of short literary fiction. The stories are easy to find, so you can read along and join in the next great conversation. If you love literary fiction, but when talking to friends their eyes glaze over, welcome home. If the last time you read literary fiction was for a boring class, we have a treat for you. So hang on tight and enjoy the ride.
Meet Your Hosts
Anais is working on a novel and you can learn more about it at her website: anaisconcepcion.com
Anais grew up in Hudson County, New Jersey – the part of Jersey that encourages residents of other states to tell armpit jokes. If Hudson County has a smell, Anais is immune to it (exception: the industrial Meadowlands, a stench that cannot be denied.) She grew up charmed and enriched by HudCo’s ethnically diverse demographic. The daily view of the New York City skyline wasn’t half bad either. She left HudCo to study at Lehigh University in Pennsylvania, and shortly after that moved to Costa Rica at age 22, where she still resides today.
Her interest in reading and writing began young, before all her baby teeth had been replaced. Her parents encouraged her reading at a young age. She was raised with values and beliefs distinctly American and Cuban – often complementary, sometimes conflicting. That upbringing influences the way she writes and digests fiction. For example, she is easily seduced by the paranormal, like her grandmothers, but quick to append that seduction with caveats and an appeal to vocabulary that sounds vaguely metaphysical. It’s a very elaborate ruse to avoid a verdict on whether or not she believes. Ghosts? Well, you know, science, so, and thus, and so on.
In addition to her embarrassingly keen interest in otherworldly fiction, Anais is also an avid reader of speculative fiction; fiction that asks questions about our collective future.
Follow her on twitter @anaisconce
Maya is a writer, mother and podcast producer. You can learn more about her at mayagoode.com
Born in Las Vegas and living on the streets, Maya was gifted to a woman at 3 1/2 years old. The woman was older and her adult children proclaimed.
“But Ma, you already raised your kids.”
And, “Did you notice she’s black!”
Yet all the woman saw was an afro with bald spots and a child who thought crackers were a vegetable. Thus began a long journey that took Maya through foster care, several states and many adventures until she became a test case for the question, “do black children need black parents.”
In the midst of court cases and Farrakhan’s attorneys, Maya discovered books of all kinds, music, painting, and method acting. She truly lived in a dreamland that made teachers concerned for her sanity. Speaking patois to her teddy bears, she channeled her New Orleans ancestors and called them her friends. She played with bees and danced in fields, and as she grew up, she tested her identity. What is black? What is reality? And the biggest question of all, “Which mother’s daughter am I?”
Straddling race, culture and class, Maya has a thirst for experience and understanding. After years of writing poetry, fiction and doing many other arts, she stopped it all. For a decade she read only a handful of books. She wanted to be normal… but there is nothing more insane than an artist without a media. So of course the art came back; it always does and after a long adventurous life Maya is working on her first two novels and enjoying a new found love of short literary fiction. She reads as a writer exploring art and emotion, but she writes as a painter.
Follow her on twitter @quotidianlight
Gerald is an author and generally fascinating man, learn more about him at Gerald-Hornby.com
Gerald was born many years ago, in a sleepy suburban backwater, near to a big city in the middle of England. After many years of study and work, he ‘downsized’ his work commitments, and began his final job. And found time to finally take up writing. Many hours were spent, staring at a blank wall, writing flash fiction and short stories and taking part in online writing communities and entering writing competitions.
He enjoyed challenges – the challenge of paring down a short story to meet restrictive word count limits; the challenge of writing large numbers of words in a short time.
Eventually, self-publishing became a viable option for those writing outside the acceptable genres for traditional publishing, and he edited and published two works for a charity before publishing his own collections of short and short-short fiction which had sat, dormant and unloved on various hard disks for several years.
2014 saw two significant milestones reached – he had three, completed, novel-length works ready for editing, and he had over a million words of works-in-progress. 2015 is going to be the year for publishing.
Follow him on twitter @authorgerald
A native of Bayonne, New Jersey, and a self-proclaimed lover of words, Rammy’s interest in literature could not have developed without the guidance and support of solid teachers who sparked his curiosity in the fine art of storytelling. His appreciation in fiction was amplified by well-picked assigned readings that spoke to the complexities of the human condition. These tales allowed him to travel to New York with James on a giant peach and mourn the death of Finny after his fall from a tree. Eventually, Rammy began reading fiction not only out of obligation, but for entertainment and education, which he continues to this day.
Follow him on twitter @rammysalem