Arts and Culture

In each episode of Unbound, we hear stories from two different authors on a theme. Today’s episode is about crime and punishment. In our first story, a woman survives an unthinkable crime, but she doesn’t get a happily-ever-after ending in Roxane Gay’s “Things I Know About Fairy Tales.” Then, we’ll travel to the wilds of Western Kentucky to learn how you can punish a man for his crimes after he’s dead. Two men in search of a body pack a camera, a violin, and a case of beer and head out on the open water in Alex Taylor’s “The Name of the Nearest River.” 

Today’s authors:

Roxane Gay’s novel, An Untamed State, will be published by Grove/Atlantic in 2014 and her essay collection, Bad Feminist, will be published by Harper Perennial, also in 2014. She is the author of Ayiti (Artistically Declined Press, 2011)co-editor of PANK, essays editor for The Rumpus, and contributing editor for Bluestem. Her writing has appeared in The Best American Short Stories 2012Oxford American, The Wall Street Journal, The Indiana Review, and countless others. She also runs Tiny Hardcore Press. All the while, she is an assistant professor at Eastern Illinois University.

Alex Taylor is the author of The Name of the Nearest River, which won the Linda Bruckheimer prize in Kentucky Literature from Sarabande Books. from Rosine, Kentucky. He has worked as a day laborer on tobacco farms, as a car detailer at a used automotive lot, as a sorghum peddler, at various fast food chains, as a tender of suburban lawns, and at a cigarette lighter factory. He holds an MFA from The University of Mississippi, and his stories have  appeared in Carolina Quarterly,American Short FictionThe Greensboro Review and elsewhere.

The fifth episode of Unbound airs at 7 p.m. Friday. It features Kyle Minor and Tania James. Join us at 89.3 or stream at

Unbound is made possible in part by the Bachelors and Masters Writing Programs at Spalding University. Read more credits and thanks.