Lit Up Episode 11: Jami Attenberg on being an ‘open source writer’ and her worst fear


It’s the season of summer reading lists! We gave you some of our favs last week, but decided to take it inward this episode with our own ‘books that make us better’ list. Angie went to her yoga teacher Aaron Dias for some recommendations to take away with her:

1. The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali by Mukunda Stiiles
2. The Way of Liberation by Adyashanti
(he has a free download available on his website
3. I Am That conversations with Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
Emily mentions Working with You Is Killing Me: Freeing Yourself from Emotional Traps at Work by Katherine Crowley & Kathi Elster, as a go to book for when you’re trying to be a better manager (even of yourself).

This week Jami Attenberg, the acclaimed author of the books The Middlesteins, The Melting Season, The Kept Man, Instant Love and most recently Saint Mazie, talks to us about being a little eccentric, her upcoming psychic visit and what it’s like to write fiction about a real person.

Her new novel Saint Mazie is about Mazie Phillips Gordon, a real-life New Yorker, and the subject of a 10-page profile by the writer Joseph Mitchell in The New Yorker in December of 1940. Attenberg was so intrigued by the bold and bawdy Mazie who ran a scratch theater on The Bowery from the prohibition era through The Depression, that she decided to create a larger-than-life, fictional version of this amazing woman who befriended and cared for the homeless throughout her life.

In the usual Lit Up style, our conversation goes way beyond the book!
JamiAttenbergHeadShot mazie
Buy Saint Mazie from your local independent book store, on Amazon, or at Barnes & Noble. It’s a #litupsummerread!
Let us know what you think of this episode!

xoxox Angie & Emily