Everyone shared touching stories and asked great questions about their own struggles with loss and grief at last nights conversation series at the 92Y. I was incredibly inspired by the discussions that took place. Many thanks to those who could attend, and in case you missed it here are some pics of the evening’s event.
In the latest latest episode of Fiction Talks, Jonathan Santlofer, a widely acclaimed author and beloved teacher at The Center, talks to Noreen Tomassi, our executive director, about his new memoir THE WIDOWER’S NOTEBOOK. PUBLISHERS WEEKLY hails the book as “a quiet stunner of a memoir… the book never loses momentum, thanks in large part to his vivid writing. This is a tender, moving, and resonant account of how life continues whether one wants it to or not.”
Q: You’ve written that “men are neither trained nor expected to express their feelings.” At what point did you decide to write this memoir about the loss of your wife? A: I’d say the decision was kind of made for me. For two years after my wife died, I kept notebooks—things I couldn’t say in public. I found myself transcribing notes and the book wrote itself. I didn’t think of writing a book. I have to credit several women I know who encouraged me to write it…Men are not brought up to express their feelings. It was difficult, but it became less so as I did it. Book Q and A’s with Deborah Kalb Read more here
“Jonathan Santlofer’s memoir, The Widower’s Notebook, tells his story of loss and recovery with honesty and humor – Jonathan Santlofer is a seasoned painter and crime writer, but his book publishing in July from Penguin is unlike anything he’s done before. The Widower’s Notebook is a memoir about the loss of his wife, Joy, who died suddenly after an ambulatory surgical procedure. It’s the story of a marriage, a story of grief, and a story of holding on and letting go, told with sensitivity, honesty, and—atypical of memoirs about loss—humor.” -Publishers Weekly Read full interview here
Penguin: From The Year of Magical Thinking to A Widow’s Story and beyond, the world of grief literature often seems to lack a man’s perspective on loss. Why do you think that is? Jonathan Santlofer: The most obvious answer—and the one I tried to deal with myself in my years of grief and then in this book—is that men are neither trained nor expected to express their feelings. “Take it like a man” and “toughen up” are things I heard from the time I was very young. Perhaps this is less true nowadays (and I hope so), but it was absolutely true when I was growing up. In writing this book I was constantly questioning myself – Do men actually write these kinds of books? I didn’t read C.S. Lewis’s book until long after I’d written mine. It might have made it easier for me if I had. There are things he writes about that … Read more
Santlofer grew up wanting to be an artist, went to art school, undergrad and graduate, and spent the first half of his adult life as a fairly successful painter. When a gallery fire destroyed nearly ten years of his artwork, he became a writer. His first novel, “The Death Artist,” about a serial killer in the New York art world, was an international bestseller. Since then, he has written several novels. He has also edited and contributed to many anthologies and has even illustrated a few. His memoir, “The Widower’s Notebook,” will be published by Penguin Books in July 2018, and he is at work on a new novel. Santlofer has lived in many places but always comes back to New York City, one of the most culturally and racially diverse cities in the world. He currently teaches at Pratt in Brooklyn. If you buy only one book in 2018 it should be “It Occurs … Read more
Jonathan Santlofer and Joyce Carol Oates in conversation at the San Francisco Public Library celebrating the new anthology “It Occurs to Me That I Am America,” featuring the work of 35 celebrated authors, is published in support of the American Civil Liberties Union on the one year anniversary of the inauguration of President Trump and the Women’s March on Washington.
Crime City Central has produced a podcast of my short story “The Muse.” All I will say about the story is that an editor friend sent me a New York Post article with the headline, ARTIST SLEEPS BESIDE MURDERED LOVER, which I had tacked to my wall for at least a year before it inspired this story. I’ve never met Jack Calverly, the producer of CCC, but he has an enviable British accent and his introduction to my story alone is enough reason to tune in – and I hope you will. Click here for podcast.
From the CT News Blog by Joe Meyer: The new Touchstone book “Inherit the Dead” isn’t the first book written by a group of popular writers — it’s a tradition that goes all the way back to the Newsday-created “Naked Came the Stranger” in 1969 — but this novel-by-committee has to be one of the best examples of this eccentric genre. Overseen by the New York City artist and crime writer Jonathan Santlofer, the book tells a taut and very suspenseful tale of a rich girl who goes missing just as she is about to come into her huge family fortune. The novel grabs you in the first section and keeps building despite the fact that 20 writers contributed chapters. There is a lot of charm in the way the style and approach changes ever so slightly slightly as we start each new section with a new writer guiding us along. But, the storytelling pace … Read more
Thanks to NY Press for this great interview about Inherit the Dead. “It is said that the generosity of crime fiction writers exists because the authors get their frustrations out on their twisted pages. There is no better tribute to their kindness than when they use their words to benefit charity. The book Inherit the Dead was born because 20 bestselling writers in the crime fiction world took time out from other projects to contribute a chapter each to this collaboration. Editor Jonathan Santlofer saw this gracious spirit first-hand after prolific writers like Lee Child, Mary Higgins Clark, and Charlaine Harris signed on immediately. To begin what would seem like a daunting task to most, Santlofer skillfully created the story’s outline and worked with all the writers by preserving their unique styles, while creating a cohesive thriller. The royalties from the sale of the novel, which is already a bestseller after only being released on … Read more