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Book Nook: Vick's Picks: My Favorite Interviews From 2019 (Part One)

back in the day, shopping for record albums in Iowa City - Vick Mickunas
Vick Mickunas

As the years fly by I like to pause at the end of each one to reflect upon the things that have happened during each year. I'll compile lists. For the past 15 years I have been writing book reviews for the Cox Ohio newspapers and each December I will share lists of my favorite books divided by whether they were fiction or non-fiction titles. During the decade that I was the music director at WYSO I would compile an annual list of my 100 favorite albums from each year. I do love making lists and sharing them.

I recently looked back and selected a half dozen of my favorite author interviews from 2019. Perhaps you are wondering; how do I decide which ones are favorites? Well, first off I want to feature books that I really liked. There are always plenty of those to choose from. Unfortunately even when I'm conversing with a writer about their really great book that won't always translate into a great interview. So I'm looking for compelling discussions about wonderful books. The sound quality of an interview is another important factor. We try to avoid conducting interviews on cell phones because that always creates sound impairments. I spend a lot of time begging book publicists to arrange for their authors to do interviews via land-line phones. This task becomes more difficult each year as the land line phones are facing extinction. When I'm trying to convince a publicist that it is crucial that we can do the interview on a land-line connection I'll attempt to press my point on occasion by saying OK, you have this great book you are publicizing-it was written by this amazing, articulate person-we can share this conversation with our audience and if it sounds really good some of our listeners will want to read the book-now why would you want to have an incredible book by a fantastic writer sound not so great on the radio because they were using a cell phone?! Why, for heaven's sake, why? We want the sound to be lovely, too.

I'm not going to tell you in these notes which interviews I selected. You'll need to listen to the podcast to find out which ones I picked. Please note that if you are an author who appeared on my program during 2019 and I did not choose your interview that it isn't personal. I had plenty of other favorites that did not make it into this program or the second one that followed this one. Hey, I loved your book! I really did. And you are fabulous. By the way, I did pick one cell phone interview because even though the sound was mediocre I could not believe I got this interview and I am still amazed that it happened. I hope you enjoy this podcast. The next one I post will be the second installment of my fave interviews from 2019.

The Book Nook on WYSO is presented by the Greene County Public Library with additional support from Washington-Centerville Public Library,  Clark County Public LibraryDayton Metro Library, and Wright Memorial Public Library.

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Vick Mickunas introduced the Book Nook author interview program for WYSO in 1994. Over the years he has produced more than 1500 interviews with writers, musicians, poets, politicians, and celebrities. Listen to the Book Nook with Vick Mickunas for intimate conversations about books with the writers who create them. Vick Mickunas reviews books for the Dayton Daily News and the Springfield News Sun.