Back in the Eighties, a few twenty-something writers made a big splash with racy tales about debauched lives. Several of them even became celebrities. In this hour of To the Best of Our Knowledge, today's hot young writers. Also, how MTV turned one coffee house poet into a star.
Novelist Rick Moody talks with Judith Strasser about his latest book, "Purple America." It's a powerful tale of a family's emotional turmoil and is characterized by a highly literary style and meticulous observation of detail. Also, refugee from the Literary Brat Pack, Jay McInerney is now in his forties with a new novel - "The Last of the Savages." He tells Steve Paulson what it was like to be a literary cause celebre and how, as a serious writer, he's grown beyond the repuation he had in his twenties. McInerney's earlier novels include "Bright Lights, Big City" and "Brightness Falls."SEGMENT 2:
Maggie Estep is another young writer who's getting a lot of attention. Her first novel is "Diary of an Emotional Idiot." She tells Steve Paulson that it's half autobiographical -- like her heroine, Estep moved around a lot as a child and had a drug problem. Maggie Estep is a leading figure in New York's spoken-word movement, has toured with rock bands and recites her poetry on MTV. She has an album out called "Love Is a Dog from Hell."SEGMENT 3:
Edwidge Danticat's family immigrated from Haiti when she was a child. She tells Steve Paulson how she developed from a Creole-speaking school-girl to (according to Granta magazine) one of America's twenty best young novelists. Her work is heavily influenced by the political violence of Haiti and the dramatic experiences of Haitian immigrants. Danticat's latest book is called "Krik? Krak!."
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