Wednesday at 2:30 on KPFK: Author Richard Wirick.
Question: How to write honestly, poetically, realistically, about the weird hallucination of life under the influence, that everyday symbiotic relationship to drugs experienced by so many of us, to painkillers, heroin, marijuana, ecstasy, valium, oxycontin? Answer: The thematically connected short stories in Kicking In, the newest collection by my guest this week. They are described by poet Nick Flynn as “distilled, brutal beauty, written with cold-eyed fierceness.” Indeed, that rhetorical, stylistic gambit --- telling the truth (!) about the alternatately benign, fatal, gruesome and, it seems, mystical connection to addiction, recreation and relief makes Kicking In one of my favorite recent finds, a book of both sociological truth-telling and artful portrait of a nation of junkies. Richard Wirick is author of a previous collection called One Hundred Siberian Postcards and articles and stories which have appeared widely, including in Playboy, Fiction, Chicago Review. Thanks for listening, on the radio or online, and downloadable for free for ninety days at the station’s website. Support Bib and community radio. Become a member sponsor of KPFK. www.kpfk.org