Roger Rosenblatt, Distinguished Professor of English and Writing at Stony Brook University’s Southampton Arts campus, was interviewed by Jeffrey Brown on PBS Newshour on February 21. The topic of the interview was Rosenblatt’s latest book, Kayak Morning: Reflections on Love, Grief and Small Boats, published in January as a follow-up to his earlier book, Making Toast, written two-and-a-half years ago after his daughter Amy died and he and his wife moved to Bethesda, Maryland, to help care for her three young children.
Rosenblatt, who has been commuting from Bethesda to teach in the MFA in Creative Writing and Literature program at the Southampton campus and at the program’s Manhattan campus, will once again be teaching during the 2012 Southampton Arts Summer, formerly known as the Southampton Writers Conference.
From July 18 to 29, he will be leading a workshop in Southampton on The Memoir, in which students will progress toward writing their memoirs by doing a number of exercises dealing with the nature of memory, the unearthing of the past, and the understanding of life as art. For information and application guidelines, visit stonybrook.edu/mfa/summer.
Beyond the PBS Newshour interview, Kayak Morning has been receiving a lot of attention. In The New York Times Sunday Book Review of January 6, Donna Rifkind wrote, in her very favorable review, that the book is “not a memoir but a meditation — an expression of the formal feeling that follows great pain — and it’s not so much about grief as about grief’s evolution over time.”
And, in the January issue of Esquire, the publication of Kayak Morning was the first entry and scored near the top of the Man at His Best This Month scale.
Rosenblatt’s essays for Time magazine and PBS have won two George Polk Awards, the Peabody and the Emmy. He is the author of six Off-Broadway plays and 14 books, including his guide to the art and craft of writing, Unless It Moves the Human Heart, which detailed the progress of one of his classes at Stony Brook Southampton, and the national bestsellers Lapham Rising, Rules for Aging, and Children of War, which won the Robert F. Kennedy Book Prize and was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award.