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'Conversations From the Sun Valley Writers' Conference' Returns With Five New Interviews

Conversations From the Sun Valley Writers' Conference logo with host Marcia Franklin. New interviews airs Fridays at 8:30 p.m. in December

Conversations From the Sun Valley Writers’ Conference is back for a 16th season! The series, which airs every Friday in December at 8:30 PM, features interviews with five bestselling authors, including two Pulitzer Prize winners.

“Each of these incredibly talented writers has their unique take on the world and our place in it,” says producer and host Marcia Franklin. “I really enjoy sharing their insights with viewers.”

Here’s the lineup:

On Dec. 1, Franklin talks with Dr. Abraham Verghese about his latest blockbuster novel, The Covenant of Water. The epic, which includes a mystery at its core, covers more than 70 years in the intertwined lives of families in the Indian state of Kerala. Verghese discusses the ties the story has to his own family history and shares his joy of writing.

Hernan Diaz joins Franklin on Dec. 8 to discuss his latest novel, Trust, which won the 2023 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. The intricately braided tale about characters in the world of high finance gives readers four different takes on the same story, playing with the idea of “truth.” Diaz explains why he constructed the novel using multiple voices, and what it was like to win the Pulitzer Prize.

On Dec. 15, David Grann regales viewers with some of the amazing true stories surrounding the wreck of The Wager, a British ship that sank off the tip of South America in 1741. In his book The Wager, Grann uses rare primary source documents to reconstruct the harrowing experiences of the ship’s castaways and shows how the aftermath of the saga is still relevant today. The book will be adapted into a film directed by Martin Scorsese, as was another of Grann’s bestsellers, Killers of the Flower Moon.

Journalist Andrea Elliott is the guest on Dec. 22. Elliott won the 2022 Pulitzer Prize for General Nonfiction for her book, Invisible Child, which chronicles eight years in the life of Dasani Coates, a child in Brooklyn. Elliott shares what compelled her to spend that much time covering the story, and how Dasani’s life exemplifies the challenges of being poor in America. Elliott also discusses some of the ethical considerations involved in reporting this complex and personal story.

A conversation with writer Mohsin Hamid about his latest novel, The Last White Man, concludes the series on Dec. 29. The story follows the transformation of a man who wakes up one day to find that his skin color has changed. Hamid, who often incorporates his own multicultural background into his work, talks with Franklin about how his life changed after the terrorist attacks of 9/11, and how he aims with his writing to “imagine the world into a better place.”

All of the past Conversations From the Sun Valley Writers’ Conference can be found online at idahoptv.org/svwc.