Tuesday, March 08, 2016

Between the Lines: Desiree Cooper

by Zinta Aistars

for WMUK 102.1 FM
Southwest Michigan's NPR affiliate

Between the Lines is my weekly radio show about books and writers with a Michigan connection. It airs every Tuesday at 7:50 a.m., 11:55 a.m., and 4:20 p.m. (or listen anytime online), on WMUK 102.1 FM, Southwest Michigan's NPR affiliate. I am the host of Between the Lines.

This week's guests: Desiree Cooper 

Having worked most of her adult life as a newspaper columnist, Desiree Cooper says "flash fiction" — stories written as quickly, and as short as, a flash — come naturally to her. In her new story collection Know the Mother (Wayne State University Press, March 2016), Cooper, who lives in the Detroit area, makes evident the storytelling skill she acquired as a twice-nominated Pulitzer Prize journalist. As a female African-American writer and activist, Cooper often intertwines the issues of racism and sexism in her work. She's also a Kresge Literary Arts Fellow and a former attorney.

Cooper's fiction reveals a woman’s heart and mind. In a piece called “The Witching Hour,” she exposes in just a few paragraphs the worries that keep a woman up at night.
“I’m a lot like many other women,” Cooper says. “I worry. I worry about all the woulds, coulds, shoulds, and mights at night. Women often feel like the cruise directors for so many other lives. It’s so hard to pack it all into a 24-hour period of time and feel like you’re everything you need to be for everyone that needs you.”
While carrying her activism into her writing, Cooper says she wants most of all to ...

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