NBCC On Autobiography & Memoir at Fall for the Book

September 22, 2011 6:00 pm
George Mason University
Fairfax, VA

Every year, the National Book Critics Circle selects awards in six different literary categories, including autobiography/memoir. In Fall for the Book’s second annual partnership with the NBCC, critic and NBCC board member Marcela Valdes leads a discussion on the popularity and significance of this genre, welcoming several distinguished writers in this field.

Peter Manseau is the author the memoir Vows: The Story of a Priest, a Nun, and Their Son; the novel Songs for the Butcher’s Daughter; and most recently Rag and Bone: A Journey Among the World’s Holy Dead. He has won the National Jewish Book Award, the Sophie Brody Medal for Outstanding Achievement in Jewish Literature, and the Ribalow Prize for Fiction, and he was shortlisted for the Mercantile Library First Novel Award. He is also a founding editor of and coauthor of Killing the Buddha: A Heretic’s Bible.

E. Ethelbert Miller is the author of several collections of poems; his most recent, How We Sleep On The Nights We Don’t Make Love, was an Independent Publisher Award Finalist. His memoir Fathering Words: The Making of An African American Writer was selected by DC WE READ for its one book, one city program sponsored by the D.C. Public Libraries, and in his most recent memoir, The 5th Inning, Miller returns to “baseball, the game of his youth, in order to find the metaphor that will provide the measurement of his life.”

Ariel Sabar’s debut book, My Father’s Paradise: A Son’s Search for his Family’s Past, won the 2008 National Book Critics Circle Award for Autobiography. His second book, Heart of the City, was published this year. His writing has appeared in the New York Times, Boston Globe, Washington Monthly, and other publications.

Panel moderator Marcela Valdes is the books editor of The Washington Examiner and a contributing editor for Publishers Weekly. She writes for The Nation, The Washington Post, The San Francisco Chronicle, The Los Angeles Times, The Virginia Quarterly Review, The Believer, and Bookforum, among other publications. She was a founder of Críticas, the English-language magazine devoted to Spanish-language books.  She is now serving her second term on the Board of Directors of the National Book Critics Circle.

The NBCC panel discussion takes place on Thursday, September 22, at 6 p.m. in Student Union Building II, Rooms 3, 4 and 5.

These authors are among the nearly 150 authors, artists and performers participating in the 13th annual Fall for the Book Festival, September 18-23, at George Mason University’s Fairfax Campus and at venues throughout Northern Virginia, D.C., and Maryland.

To stay up-to-date with the latest news on this year’s festival, bookmark the festival’s webpage here or join the mailing list on the left of the homepage to have information delivered directly to your inbox.

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