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How To Write Short

In a time-starved culture with a case of information overload, the skill of using fewer words may be the most effective writing technique of all.


'Heart' Of Iranian Identity Reimagined For A New Generation

Shahnameh is the Persian Odyssey, with ancient legends and myths put into verse. A new English language version brings the 1,000-year-old text into the modern age, with ornate recompositions of Persian miniature paintings.

Haitian Youth Illuminated In 'Sea Light'

Claire of the Sea Light is award-winning author Edwidge Danticat's newest work of fiction. She spoke to host Rachel Martin about how experiences of her own childhood in Haiti are reflected in her young protagonist.

'The Blessing Cup': Polacco And Her Family Of Storytellers

Patricia Polacco has written and illustrated more than 90 picture books, and she says her early life had a profound effect on her work. In her latest children's book, The Blessing Cup, Polacco takes readers back to her grandparents' time in Russia.

Carving Up Hippos In 'The Sound Of Things Falling'

A new book by Juan Gabriel Vasquez is set in 1960s Bogota, when Colombians lived with drug-related violence daily. Weekend Edition Saturday host Scott Simon talks with Vasquez about his book.

'Bummers, Blisters And Boondoggles': A Jokester Joins The Army

Humorist and late-night radio voice Jean Shepherd spent time in the U.S. Army during World War II. He never made it overseas, but the stories he mined from that experience have now been collected in a new volume, Shep's Army.

Sisterly Conflict Against A Great War Backdrop In 'Daughters Of Mars'

Thomas Keneally's new novel, The Daughters of Mars, follows two Australian sisters who become nurses during World War I. Naomi and Sally Durance share a guilty secret, but they don't share any sisterly closeness — until the horrors of war begin to bind them together.

Remembering Elmore Leonard, A Writer Who Hated Literature

NPR's Scott Simon remembers Elmore Leonard as a writer who found "putting pretty clothes on hard, direct words" contemptible, and hated what's typically known as literature. Leonard wrote more than 40 novels over his long career.

Book News: This Town, That Town. A Squabble Worthy Of Washington

A dispute over the title This Town has sparked a mini-controversy worthy of Mark Leibovich's book about ego and excess in Washington, D.C.

Book News: Guantanamo Reading Material Spurs More Controversy

Also: Harrison Ford was Joan Didion's carpenter; Aziz Ansari has a book deal.