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Carmen Maria Machado on form & genre, fairy tales & urban legends, lineage & representation

Carmen Maria Machado, author of ‘In the Dream House’ (Graywolf Press), will be headlining the 2024 Get Lit! Festival in Spokane, Washington.

This week on The Write Question, host Lauren Korn speaks with Carmen Maria Machado about her memoir, In the Dream House (Graywolf Press, 2019), and her collection of short stories, Her Body and Other Parties (Graywolf Press, 2017): about form and genre, fairy tales, lineage (Angela Carter, Shirley Jackson, Kelly Link, Alvin Schwartz), representation, and more!

This conversation was coordinated in partnership with and in advance of the 2024 Get Lit! Festival in Spokane, Washington, where Carmen is appearing as the headlining author. She will be...

...teaching a craft class on speculative non-fiction on April 13, 2024, at 10AM PDT at the Montvale Event Center. Purchase your book fair pass here! conversation with Maya Jewell Zeller, Alexandra Teague, Jennifer Perrine, Erin Pringle, and Carla Crujido on April 13, 2024, at 3PM PDT at the Montvale Event Center. Purchase your book fair pass here!

...reading and speaking with Sharma Shields on April 13, 2024, at 7PM PDT at the Bing Crosby Theatre. Purchase your tickets for this event here!

About Carmen:

Carmen Maria Machado is the author of the bestselling memoir In the Dream House, the graphic novel The Low, Low Woods, and the award-winning short story collection Her Body and Other Parties. She has been a finalist for the National Book Award and the winner of the Bard Fiction Prize, the Lambda Literary Award for Lesbian Fiction, the Lambda Literary Award for LGBTQ Nonfiction, the Brooklyn Public Library Literature Prize, the Shirley Jackson Award, and the National Book Critics Circle's John Leonard Prize. She holds an MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and has been awarded fellowships and residencies from the Guggenheim Foundation, The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage, Yaddo, Hedgebrook, and the Millay Colony for the Arts. She is the former Abrams Artist-in-Residence at the University of Pennsylvania.

Carmen Maria Machado recommends:

How to Suppress Women's Writing by Joanna Russ (University of Texas Press)

The White Mosque: A Memoir Sofia Samatar (Catapult Books)

Proxies: Essays Near Knowing by Brian Blanchfield (Nightboat Books)

A Few Seconds of Radiant Filmstrip: A Memoir of Seventh Grade by Kevin Brockmeier (Alfred A. Knopf)

Magical/Realism: Essays on Music, Memory, Fantasy, and Borders by Vanessa Angélica Villarreal (forthcoming in May 2024 from Tiny Reparations Books; Penguin Random House)

Other Minds and Other Stories by Bennett Sims (Two Dollar Radio)

Lauren Korn recommends:

Her Body and Other Parties and In the Dream House: A Memoir by Carmen Maria Machado (Graywolf Press)

The Sasquatch Hunters’ Almanac and The Cassandra by Sharma Shields (Holt McDougal; Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)

Evergreen: Grim Tales & Verses from the Gloomy Northwest edited by Sharma Shields and Maya Jewell Zeller (Scablands Books)

No Archive Will Restore You by Julietta Singh (Punctum Books)

Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body by Roxane Gay (Harper Collins)

Mean by Myriam Gurba (Coffee House Press)

Magic for Beginners (Small Beer Press, 1st ed.), Stranger Things Happen (Small Beer Press, 1st ed.), Pretty Monsters (Penguin Random House), and Get in Trouble (Penguin Random House) by Kelly Link

Pastoralia (Riverhead Books) and A Swim in a Pond in the Rain: In Which Four Russians Give a Master Class on Writing, Reading, and Life (Penguin Random House) by George Saunders

Mr. Fox, Boy Snow Bird, What is Not Yours is Not Yours, and Gingerbread by Helen Oyeyemi (all from Riverhead Books)

Swamplandia! by Karen Russell (Vintage Books)

The Write Question team for this episode was Lauren Korn, host, co-producer, and editor; and Chris Moyles, co-producer, editor, and sound engineer. This episode is supported by Fact & Fiction, an independent bookstore located in the heart of downtown Missoula, Montana, providing books for all ages and supporting the literary community in Montana and beyond. More information can be found at

The Write Question logo and brand (2022) was designed by Molly Russell. You can see more of her work at and on Instagram @iamthemollruss. Our music was written and recorded by John Floridis.

Funding for The Write Question comes from Humanities Montana; members of Montana Public Radio; and from the Greater Montana Foundation—encouraging communication on issues, trends, and values of importance to Montanans.

The Write Question is a production of Montana Public Radio.

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Lauren R. Korn holds an M.A. in poetry from the University of New Brunswick, where she was the recipient of the Tom Riesterer Memorial Prize and the Angela Ludan Levine Memorial Book Prize. A former bookseller and the former Director of the Montana Book Festival, she is now an Arts and Culture Producer at Montana Public Radio and the host of it’s literature-based radio program and podcast, ‘The Write Question.’
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