Series: So Many Damn Books

Christopher (@cdhermelin) and Drew (@drewsof) talk about reading, literature, publishing, and trying to make it through their never-dwindling stack of things to read. All with a themed drink in their hands.

Recorded at the Damn Library in Brooklyn, NY. For show info, book lists, and drink recipes, visit

150: Book Recommendation Extravaganza

It’s the big 1-5-0 and since it also happens to be the holiday season, we opened the phone-lines to some of our Patreon supporters to help recommend some books for their wishlists or to pick up for their loved ones! Imagine Christopher and Drew in a big ol’ telethon studio, with phones ringing off the…

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149: Short Stories with Lena Valencia (One Story)

One Story managing editor, creative writing teacher, and writer of her own work: Lena Valencia wears many hats. She zooms on in to the Damn Library and Drew and Christopher pick her brain on writing scary things, what makes a good One Story submission, and how she tries to listen to the advice she gives…

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148: Backlist: Mark Z. Danielewski (HOUSE OF LEAVES)

Christopher and Drew discuss House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski at 20 years, Drew returning to the house and Christopher there for the first time. Plus, the pleasures of ergodic fiction, 3-D fiction, discussions of the Internet and how it fails us, and horror films and horror novels. It’s spooky season, and the episode…

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147: Rumaan Alam (LEAVE THE WORLD BEHIND) & Lynn Steger Strong’s WANT

Rumaan Alam zooms around into the online void paradox that is the Damn Library to talk about his new novel, Leave the World Behind. Grocery shopping, writing a glue trap, personal detail, hypertext, and careful language choices, all populate a very far-ranging conversation that veers from teeth to AirBnB foibles. Plus, Rumaan brought Want by…

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146: The Morning News’ SUPER ROOSTER Predictions

Christopher and Drew prognosticate and pontificate about the Super Rooster. Drew might have a scoop. Christopher just won’t read Wolf Hall. Listen, and then let us know your predictions! contribute! for drink recipes, book lists, and more, visit: music: Disaster Magic (  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

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145: Raven Leilani (LUSTER) & Danzy Senna’s NEW PEOPLE

A zoom session with Raven Leilani gets us into all sorts of things, from candles to disco to painting to amorality, and how you have to come to the page as though you don’t think anyone will read it. Also nail polish. And so much more. Plus, Raven brought us New People by Danzy Senna,…

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144: Megha Majumdar (A BURNING) and Anjan Sundaram’s BAD NEWS

Megha Majumdar zooms from her library into the virtual Damn Library so that we can all talk about her bestseller, A Burning. We talk about what makes an Amaro, juggling three character’s POVs, the life of an editor/writer, and the context of things online, as well as parallels of hope. Plus, we discuss the urgent…

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143: Reading Snapshot Redux

Christopher and Drew talk about why people might not want to read classics and books from “Best of the Year” lists, and hope folks can learn to trust their reading instincts. Plus, some talk of blueberries, education, difficult sci-fi, and a tiny ode to Aimee Bender. Zoomin’ on up. contribute! for drink recipes, book…

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142: Lindsay Ellis (AXIOM’S END) & Orson Scott Card’s SPEAKER FOR THE DEAD

Lindsay Ellis zooms on in to the Damn Library with her recently-NYT-best-selling Axiom’s End! We talk ~around~ the plot of her novel, the joys of writing about 2007, who would be allowed to adapt it as a musical, and more. Plus, we talk about the second book in Orson Scott Card’s Ender Saga, what to…

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141: Aminatou Sow & Ann Friedman (BIG FRIENDSHIP + CALL YOUR GIRLFRIEND) & Octavia Butler’s PARABLE OF THE SOWER

The Zoomin’ Damn Library welcomes the good friends and co-hosts of Call Your Girlfriend, Aminatou Sow & Ann Friedman, who are both now newly minted authors of Big Friendship: How We Keep Each Other Close. So of course we talk friendship, and how the scientific studies weren’t quite there like they thought it would be,…

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