Jun 21 • 33M

Passages: Frances de Pontes Peebles on The Air You Breathe

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Michelle Hoover
Join award-winning novelist and writing coach Michelle Hoover and special guests for your morning writing wake up call, starting with a 50-day writing challenge.
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First pages are impossible… so we’re hearing from authors about how they got them right. 

In this episode, Frances de Pontes Peebles discusses the first pages of her latest novel, The Air You Breathe, her powerful use of a reminiscent narrator, how to plant the seeds of what your reader needs to know (and leave out what they don’t), how best to include lists and dialog to wake up your prose, and how to stick to your decisions as a writer.

Peebles’s first pages can be found here.

Help local bookstores and our authors by buying this book on Bookshop.

Click here for the audio/video version of this interview.

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Frances de Pontes Peebles is the author of the novels The Seamstress and The Air You Breathe. She is a Creative Writing Fellow in Literature for 2020 from The National Endowment for the Arts. Her books have been translated into ten languages and won the Elle Grand Prix for fiction, the Friends of American Writers Award, and the James Michener-Copernicus Society of America Fellowship. Her second novel, The Air You Breathe, was a Book of the Month Club pick. Born in Pernambuco, Brazil, she is a graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop. She has received a Fulbright Grant, Brazil’s Sacatar Foundation Fellowship, and was a Teaching Fellow at the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference. Her short stories and essays have appeared in O. Henry Prize Stories, Zoetrope: All-Story, Ploughshares, Guernica, Missouri Review, Indiana Review, Catapult, and Real Simple. Her novel, The Seamstress, was adapted for film and mini-series on Brazil’s Globo Network. She is proud to serve as Chair of the Board of the Young Center for Immigrant Children’s Rights. In Spring 2019, she served as Visiting Associate Professor of Fiction at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop.