Saturday, August 6, 2016

Nicole Dennis-Benn, On Reading

There’s nothing like finding a book that makes me read for hours at a time; one that I look forward to going back to after being away from it for too long, or re-read without hesitation. I have a tendency to linger in bookstores and libraries, browsing titles. While many people fall in love with covers, synopsis, and maybe authors they’re use to reading, I tend to fall in love with first sentences and paragraphs. I like to feel I’m in conversation with the author and the people they write about. More than that, reading fuels my writing, my craft. It’s the only thing that pacifies my anxieties about writing. After completing a project, I like to just relax with reading a well written book with fleshed out characters, reasonable prose, and a good plot. 

{Nicole Dennis-Benn is the author of the highly acclaimed debut novel,HERE COMES THE SUN (Norton/Liveright, July 2016), which has received a starred Kirkus Review and is deemed one of the best books to read this summer and beyond by New York Times, NPR, BBC, BuzzFeed, Book Riot, Bookish, Miami Herald, Elle, O Magazine, Marie Claire, Entertainment Weekly, Flavorwire, After Ellen, BookPage, Cosmopolitan, Brooklyn Magazine, among others. New York Times Book reviewer, Jennifer Senior describes HERE COMES THE SUN as a “lithe, artfully-plotted debut”; Pulitzer Prize finalist, Laila Lalami, as well as Booklist have deemed it a "fantastic debut"; and Man Booker Prize winner, Marlon James says “[Here Comes the Sun] is a story waiting to be told”. Dennis-Benn has also been recently nominated for the 2016 Center for Fiction First Novel Prize. Her work has appeared in The New York TimesELLE MagazineElectric LiteratureLenny LetterCatapult, Red Rock ReviewKweli Literary JournalMosaicEbony, and the Feminist Wire. Nicole Dennis-Benn has an MFA in Creative Writing from Sarah Lawrence College and has been awarded fellowships from MacDowell Colony, Hedgebrook, Lambda, Barbara Deming Memorial Fund, Hurston/Wright, and Sewanee Writers' Conference. Dennis-Benn was born and raised in Kingston, Jamaica. She lives with her wife in Brooklyn, New York.}