4a: conversation with luís alberto urrea — on memory and story (pt. 1)

by the creation files

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IN THIS FILE: David Whyte (Consolations: The Solace, Nourishment and Underlying Meaning of Everyday Words); John Geddes (A Familiar Rain); The Hummingbird's Daughter; narrative as a basic organizing principle of memory; memory as a basic organizing principle of creativity; Muriel Rukeyser; "writing towards the trance"; Teresa "Teresita" Urrea ("Saint of Cabora"); The Yaqui (an indigenous, syncretistic Catholic tribe of southeast Sonora, Mexico, belonging to a larger ethnic group, the "Cahita"); where Carlos Castaneda got it wrong; Esperanza Urrea; working from dreams; "tiyospaye" (Oglala/Lakota/Sioux); Rick Elias; re-membering; Linda Hogan (Chickasaw novelist, essayist, environmentalist); resistance as inducement: Thomas Moore (Care of the Soul); the vanity of force-feeding awe; healer women of Cuernavaca, Mexico; healing through art; "don" (gift); T.S. Eliot ("The Wasteland"); haiku + Kobayashi Issa (Japanese poet, lay Buddhist priest of the Jōdo Shinshū sect); Brennan Manning (Ruthless Trust: The Ragamuffin's Path to God); the miracles of everyday life; magic(al) realism; the price of truth telling; Mikhail Prishvin

Executive Producers: Mar Hobbs, Patsy Moore
Producer, Host: Patsy Moore


• He was "discovered" by seminal writer Ursula K. Le Guin, a major influence of Neil Gaiman, Susanna Clarke, and Hayao Miyazaki.

• He has published extensively in all major genres.

• His first book, Across the Wire: Life and Hard Times on the Mexican Border (1993), was named a New York Times Notable Book and won the Christopher Award.

• He won a Western States Book Award in poetry for The Fever of Being (1994).

• He was featured in the 1996 Best American Poetry collection, edited by Adrienne Rich.

• He won a 1999 American Book Award for his memoir, Nobody's Son: Notes from an American Life.

• In 2000, he was voted into the Latino Literature Hall of Fame following the publication of "Vatos".

• The Devil's Highway (2004), his account of a group of Mexican immigrants lost in the Arizona desert, won the Lannan Literary Award, was a 2005 Pulitzer Prize finalist for nonfiction, and a finalist for the Pacific Rim Kiriyama Prize.

• The Hummingbird's Daughter (2005), his historical novel about his great-aunt Teresa ("Teresita") Urrea, sometimes known as the Saint of Cabora and the Mexican Joan of Arc, won the Kiriyama Prize in fiction.

• Into the Beautiful North (2009), his most recent novel, earned a citation of excellence from the American Library Association Rainbow's Project.

• He won a 2009 Edgar award from the Mystery Writers of America for best short story ("Amapola" in the Phoenix Noir anthology).

• "Mr. Mendoza's Paintbrush", a short story from his collection Six Kinds of Sky (named the 2002 Small-press Book of the Year [in fiction] by the editors of ForeWord magazine), was recently released as a stunning graphic novel by Cinco Puntos Press.

• Into the Beautiful North, The Devil's Highway, and The Hummingbird's Daughter have been chosen by more than 30 different cities and colleges for One Book community read programs.

• His new short story collection, The Water Museum (2015), was named Notable Book of the Year by the Washington Post, and one of the best books of the year by Kirkus Reviews, NPR, and Men's Journal.

• After serving as a relief worker in Tijuana and a film extra and columnist-editor-cartoonist for several publications, he moved to Boston, where he taught expository writing and fiction workshops at Harvard. He has also taught at Massachusetts Bay Community College and the University of Colorado, and he was the writer in residence at the University of Louisiana-Lafayette.

• He is a professor of creative writing at the University of Illinois-Chicago.




released February 29, 2016
"The Simulation Hypothesis", by Revolution Void, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License. (bit.ly/1jmalQx)

"Border Blaster" (instrumental version), by Josh Woodward and based on a work at www.joshwoodward.com, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License. (bit.ly/1jmalQx)

"Rother, Dinger You and Me", by Antiguo Automata Mexicano, is licensed under an Attribution License. (bit.ly/1dicRGw)

"Medicine Bowl", by Small Colin, is licensed under an Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 International License. (bit.ly/K9eh9h)

"Crossbill Swallows 2", by Nick Kuepfer, is licensed under an Attribution-NoDerivs 2.5 License. (bit.ly/1NZRqX6)



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the creation files Los Angeles, California

"The Creation Files" (aka: stuff behind the making of stuff) is a bi-weekly, inspirational podcast for creatives, airing new episodes on the second and fourth Mondays of each month. Hosted by Patsy Moore—music composer, recording artist, filmmaker, poet, essayist, spiritual counselor, and speaker. Her book, Things I've Come to Realize in the Past Few Days (No. 1), was published in 2015. ... more

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