Episode 15 --- Rion Amilcar Scott
Photo Credit: Rebecca Aranda
Rion Amilcar Scott just published his first book, a short story collection about life in the fictitious Cross River, Maryland. Insurrections is about how the residents of this town that was founded in 1807 after the country's first successful slave revolt cope with life's challenges including depression, financial difficulty, drugs and family conflicts.
His work is reminiscent of the short fiction by Edward P. Jones, a writer Rion counts as one of his influences. The characters Rion created are well drawn. They live and breathe on the page, and you will find yourself pulling for them. Many of these stories are gut punchers that will stay with you long after you finish reading.
Rion is an English professor at Bowie State University in Bowie, Maryland, and that's where we met to discuss his work. We talked about writing Black men and boys as fully developed characters who are not afraid to show their vulnerability, how becoming a dad has changed his writing and the way his life has been shaped by reading.
- why he wanted to show class tensions in the Black community
- the role his dad played in his writing the book
- why one of his stories wouldn't exist without the failed War on Drugs
- how he went from a "boring" title to Insurrections
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We have a free copy of Insurrections to give away. It will go to the first listener to contact us on Facebook or Twitter (@ReadMorePodcast) and tell us the classic book that Rion says could use a rewrite.
If you have won a ReadMore giveaway in the last 90 days, you're ineligible for this contest. Also, if you and I have ever folded clothes together you're probably ineligible. ReadMore does not have a friends and family plan! But we'll always have those memories of working retail.
You can also support ReadMore when you order this book from Amazon.com using the link below: Insurrections