Today’s episode looks at friendships between two pairs of girls, complex in nature and sometimes fraught with danger. Like roommates. Can’t live with them, can’t exile them to space. College is a time to make lasting friendships, but what if your freshman roommate turns out to be from another planet? Our first story is Tessa Mellas with “Bibi From Jupiter.” Then “our girl” takes her best friend to Sin City to get over her boyfriend. Claire Vaye Watkins explores the things that happen in Vegas, but don’t quite stay there, in “Rondine Al Nido.”
Tessa Mellas is a PhD candidate in English and Comparative Literature at the University of Cincinnati. Her fiction has appeared or is forthcoming in Crazyhorse, Fifty-two Stories, Fugue,Gulf Coast, Hayden’s Ferry Review, Lightspeed Magazine, New Orleans Review, Pank, StoryQuarterly, and Washington Square Review. Her story collection Lungs Full of Noise is the winner of the 2013 Iowa Short Fiction Award and is forthcoming from the University of Iowa Press.
Claire Vaye Watkins’ debut collection of short stories, Battleborn (Riverhead Books), won the Story Prize, the New York Public Library Young Lions Fiction Award, the Rosenthal Family Foundation Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and a Silver Pen Award from the Nevada Writers Hall of Fame. A finalist for the Frank O’Connor International Short Story Award, and longlisted for the Sunday Times EFG Private Bank Short Story Award and the Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction, Battleborn was named a best book of 2012 by the San Francisco Chronicle, Boston Globe, Time Out New York, Flavorwire, and NPR.org. In 2012, Claire was selected as one of the National Book Foundation’s “5 Under 35.”An assistant professor at Bucknell University, Claire is also the co-director, with Derek Palacio, of the Mojave School, a non-profit creative writing workshop for teenagers in rural Nevada. “Rondine al Nido” was first published in The Chicago Tribune, © Claire Vaye Watkins 2012, and subsequently published in Battleborn, by Riverhead Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc., © 2012 by Claire Vaye Watkins.
The seventh episode of Unbound airs at 7 p.m. Tuesday. It features Matt Bell and Brian Leung. Join us at 89.3 or stream at WFPL.org.
Unbound is made possible in part by the Bachelors and Masters Writing Programs at Spalding University. Read more credits and thanks.