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Author Michael Glenn Tells All About His IRDA-Winning Book

Selected Stories was the winner in the Short Stories category of the 2024 IndieReader Discovery Awards, where undiscovered talent meets people with the power to make a difference.

Following find an interview with author Michael Glenn.

What is the name of the book and when was it published?

Selected Stories by Michael Glenn… September, 2023.

What’s the book’s first line? 

“Why anyone should dislike me, I cannot imagine, and yet I am sure that Rondacq does.”

What’s the book about? Give us the “pitch”.

My book features nineteen stories written over the course of sixty years. Many highlight difficulties in relationships. Some stories “look back.” The characters are prickly and difficult, caring and kind, old and young. They struggle to find meaning–in the debris found on a street, an odd look shared between a piano teacher and his wife, an idealized relationship that spans decades….

What inspired you to write the book? A particular person? An event?

During a conversation about “what we keep with us over the years,” an old friend invited me to “look into my attic” and see what I found. When I did, I discovered over a hundred stories I’d written over the years. Many seemed too good to languish in the dust, so I resolved to polish and publish them so friends, family and other readers could share them, too.

What’s the most distinctive thing about the main character? Who-real or fictional-would you say the character reminds you of?

Well, since these are stories, there are many “main characters.” Most share a sense that, in some way, something in their lives is not going well, they’ve been let down or disappointed… and the story becomes a curious exploration of what this might be.

What’s the main reason someone should really read this book?

I think they’ll enjoy it!

When did you first decide to become an author?

I wanted to be an author when I was nine. I was writing stories about “Little Tree” and his friends in the forest when my teacher asked me to read some stories aloud to my classmates. To my delight, they liked them! Their encouragement deepened my ambition.

Is this the first you’ve written?

No. I published a book of short stories called “Trouble on the Hill” in 1979. I’ve written plays, novels, and stories for years (mainly unpublished), as well as a number of published non-fiction books in the fields of medicine and therapy

What do you do for work when you’re not writing?

I was trained as a physician, and I worked both as a family physician and a psychiatrist (at different times). I also spent ten years working as a political activist in the Boston area.

Is there something in particular that motivates you (fame? fortune?)

Almost all my stories begin with a deep feeling, usually from a personal experience of some sort. . This feeling bubbles and bubbles inside me until it expands into a story. My motivation, then, is to tell a story that creates that same feeling for the reader.

Which writer, living or dead, do you most admire?

Virginia Woolf. Also Chekhov, Beckett, and William Trevor

Which book do you wish you could have written?

“Mrs. Dalloway,” (by Virginia Woolf)

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