Now playing on Otherppl, a conversation with Steve Almond. His new book, William Stoner and the Battle for the Inner Life, is available from Ig Publishing.

 

This is Steve’s fourth time on the program. He first appeared in Episode 9, on October 16, 2011, and again in Episode 302, on August 10, 2014, and Episode 513, on April 8, 2018.

Almond is the author of ten books of fiction and nonfiction, including the New York Times bestsellers Candyfreak and Against Football. Last year, he published Bad Storiesa literary investigation of what the hell just happened to our country, which he wrote to keep from going crazy. (You can find his latest rants here or here.)

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One of the great tragedies of childhood was my inability to harness the forces of witchcraft. It wasn’t for lack of trying. You have no idea how many times I stared at my homework and wiggled my nose, hoping to cause math problems to magically solve themselves, how many times I urged the kitchen dishes to become spontaneously clean with a snap of my finger. For years I was convinced the problem had to do with sound effects, or more specifically a lack of them. On “Bewitched,” whenever someone cast a spell, it was invariably accompanied by the sound of a harp or a bell or both. My spells were devastatingly silent.