Bob Seger's House and Other Stories
Foreword by Charles Baxter, Contributions by Ellen Airgood, Matt Bell, Bonnie Jo Campbell, Jack Driscoll, Loren D. Estleman, Bill Harris, Gordon Henry, Laura Kasischke, Janet Kauffman, Mardi Jo Link, Ander Monson, Thisbe Nissen, Eileen Pollack, John Smolens, Gloria Whelan, Michael Zadoorian, Thomas Lynch, Desiree Cooper, Michael Byers, Peter Ho Davies, Natalie Bakopoulos and Michael Delp
The scope of this project reflects the dynamic and diverse writing that is currently taking place by people who consider their home to be the Great Lakes state. Stories are far-ranging, from the streets of Detroit and the iconic presence of the auto industry to the wild tracts of the Upper Peninsula. The book vibrates with that tension, of metal versus rock and human frailty taking on the pitfalls and hardships of living in this world.
In his foreword, Charles Baxter asks, "Does a region give rise to a particular kind of literature? Michigan is so fiercely diverse in its landscapes, its economy, and its demographics that it presents anybody who wants to write about it with a kind of blank slate. You can't summarize the state easily." These storytellers exude a "Michigan aesthetic" in their writing, something that cannot be learned in a textbook or taught in a classroom but can be felt through the tales of these storytellers.
The experience of picking up this collection is akin to taking a drive from the mechanized world and arriving several hours later in one of the wildest places on earth. Readers of short fiction will enjoy the multitude of voices in this anthology.
About the Authors
M. L. Liebler is an award-winning poet, literary arts activist, and professor. He is the author of several books of poetry, including Wide Awake in Someone Else's Dream (Wayne State University Press, 2008), and an editor of the ground-breaking anthology Working Words: Punching the Clock and Kicking Out the Jams (Coffee House Press, 2010). He is also author of I Want to Be Once Wayne State University Press, 2016). He has taught at Wayne State University since 1980.
"Who knew Michigan was so wide, deep, weird, and full of second chances? Well, I did— and you did too, but we haven't seen such literary stories all in one epic collection. Picking up this book is like taking the Rand McNally of the state and crinkling it up and mashing it together to make new roads, lakes, and cities. The Michigan that is here in these pages is entirely new yet familiar. Funny how that works when it comes to art. You can go from the Upper Peninsula and all the way downstate and never leave the page, all the way to Seger's."—Doug Stanton, New York Times best-selling author
"This collection of new stories from my home state is alive with a sense of what it means to be a writer in a place as diverse as Michigan. From the U.P. where people live against the hard edge of weather, to the sometimes equally harsh streets of Detroit, or the suburban landscapes of Ann Arbor and Grand Rapids, these are stories of a quiet yet fierce grace to remind us what it means to be alive."—Dan Gerber
"This is a vital and engrossing collection of stories from some of the most important voices in contemporary American fiction. That these authors and characters all have strong ties to Michigan provides an intriguing connection between the stories, and collectively the stories paint a wonderfully varied and compelling portrait of the state and its diverse cultures. Yet these are not just great Michigan writers; they are great writers, period. This anthology could hold its own with any recent collection of contemporary American fiction, and the authors in these pages have rightfully earned many of the nation's most revered literary achievements."—Valerie Laken, Author of Dream House and Separate Kingdoms
"In Bob Seger's House and Other Stories, the editors honor the great tradition of Michigan storytelling and mythmaking—the tales we tell each other to help us understand our world, to keep us alive. These stories cover a diverse range of characters, times, places, and styles, displaying the abundant wealth of writing talent with Michigan connections. No matter where these stories take place, they're grounded in spirit and heart."—Jim Daniels, Author of Eight Mile High, Birth Marks, and Other Books