Vick Mickunas created the Book Nook author interview program for WYSO in 1994. Over the years he has produced more than 1200 interviews with writers, musicians, poets, politicians, and celebrities. Vick Mickunas reviews books for the Dayton Daily News and the Springfield News Sun.
The novelist George Pelecanos has been plugging away writing crime fiction for a number of years. He sets his books in his hometown of Washington, D.C. He just started a new series that features Spero Lucas, a veteran of the Iraq War who is now working in a somewhat shady occupation: he recovers stolen merchandise.
In "The Cut" Lucas has been hired to recover some stolen shipments of marijuana. Lucas quickly becomes entangled in a nether world of creepy criminals. Lucas just wants his cut. He'll get 40% of the value of any goods he can recover.
The first time I interviewed James Lee Burke the year was 1997 and he came out to the station to talk about his novel "Cimarron Rose." That book went on to win the Edgar Award for that year.
That interview was the beginning of a wonderful connection with one of America's greatest writers. Burke just published his 30th novel, "Feast Day of Fools." The author is now 75 years old and while he has slowed down a little bit; he no longer goes out on book tours, his writing gets more powerful with each successive book.
Do you know that winemakers can add up to 200 additives to wines that they are making? Many winemakers manipulate the wine making process through the addition of sulfites, sugar, oak chips, and even oxygen.
Wine writer Alice Feiring believes that these additives can ruin what should be a natural product made from fermented grapes and little else. Her opinions have made her into a bit of a renegade within the wine industry.
Frank Bill lives in Corydon, Indiana. He works at a paint factory. He has observed as the economy has soured in his part of rural Indiana. The good factory jobs are vanishing. Meth labs flourish. Crime is soaring.
Bill keeps a notebook handy and he scribbles down story ideas inspired by the devastation he sees around him. His first book, "Crimes in Southern Indiana" is dark and violent and nearly impossible to put down.
In this interview Bill talks about his inspirations-the rejections-and how he finally broke through and got his stuff published.