July 20, 2012
SELECTED SHORTS tours regularly to venues around the country, and the two stories on this program were presented in Missoula, Montana. The first, “Liliana,” is by Montana-born Maile Meloy. Meloy, who is now based in California, told host Isaiah Sheffer and SHORTS literary commentator Hannah Tinti (in a phone interview) that the story’s unusual premise was the result of a comment by one reader that her fiction never included either ghosts or small boys.
In this tale of a glamorous grandmother briefly invading the painfully constructed normal life of the narrator, Meloy says she explores the power of money to stand in for love. And Tinti comments that “Liliana” is a larger-than-life, Auntie Mame-like creation. Meloy’s story collections include Half in Love: Stories, and Liars and Saints. “Liliana” was published in The Paris Review, and Meloy also contributes to The New Yorker and the New York Times, among other publications. The reader is SHORTS regular James Naughton.
Isaiah Sheffer adds to his repertory of slightly besieged men with a virtuoso read of Richard Ford’s “Going to the Dogs,” in which the down-on-his-luck narrator meets two gun-toting broads that turn his world upside-down in a day. Ford is the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Sportswriter and Independence Day among many celebrated works. LISTEN TO THE SHOW