Suspend Your Disbelief

Travis Holland

Contributing Editor

Travis Holland is the author of The Archivist’s Story (Dial Press), a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers selection. In 2007, The Archivist’s Story was listed among the best books of the year by Publisher’s Weekly and the Financial Times, and was a GuardianReaders’ Pick. Travis is the winner of the 2008 VCU Cabell First Novelist Award, and has been nominated for the 2009 Impac Dublin prize. His stories have previously appeared in PloughsharesGlimmer TrainFive Points,and The Quarterly. He lives in Ann Arbor.


Essays |

Present Everywhere, Visible Nowhere: Flaubert’s Eye for Detail

“What a bitch of a thing prose is!” Gustave Flaubert wrote in a letter to his lover Louise Colet in 1852. “It’s never finished; there’s always something to redo. Yet I think one can give it the consistency of verse. A good sentence in prose should be like a good line in poetry, unchangeable, as rhythmic, as sonorous.” In this essay, contributing editor Travis Holland meditates on Flaubert’s influence and legacy in fiction.

Shop Talk |

Book of the Week: Salvage the Bones, by Jesmyn Ward

This week’s feature is Salvage the Bones, by Jesmyn Ward. Published last month by Bloomsbury, the book is Ward’s second novel. She is also the author of the highly acclaimed novel Where the Line Bleeds, which was an Essence Magazine Book Club selection, a Black Caucus of the ALA Honor Award recipient, and a finalist for both the VCU Cabell First Novelist Award and the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award. A Stegner Fellow at Stanford from 2008 to 2010, Ward received her MFA from the University of Michigan, where she won Hopwood Awards for essays, drama, and fiction. She was the 2010-2011 […]

Interviews |

Bringing the News: An Interview with Richard Ford

In this lively conversation, Travis Holland and author Richard Ford discuss the genesis of Ford’s most famous fictional character, Frank Bascombe, the importance of always remembering the reader, greeting cards, what could well be one of the greatest short stories of the 20th century, and why place in fiction means nothing.

Shop Talk |


How often does it happen? Once or twice, maybe? You’re in a bookstore, you’re at the library, drifting among the stacks, your eye glazed over not with boredom but indecision, because you simply cannot decide what it is you want to read next. Reading something next, that’s the easy part, particularly if you’re one of those readers for whom the prospect of not reading something, anything, is just, well, unthinkable. You read one book or one story, and when you’ve finished that, you read another. It’s like breathing in a way, one breath and then another, and another. But on […]

Literary Partners