Pulitzer Prize

Peter Serling / http://www.npr.org/

Northwest Public Radio's classical music programming staff has lately been making sure to include women composers on our playlists. Here's one you might not have heard of -- but now you will. Julia Wolfe has received the Pulitzer Prize for her oratorio about coal miners and their families.

Molly Sheridan/Courtesy of the artist

Where the Pacific NW, environmental stewardship and classical music meet: the new release from Seattle Symphony. "Become Ocean" by John Luther Adams was awarded the 2014 Pulitzer Prize in Music. Seattle Symphony commissioned & premiered it. Adams is based in Alaska. In addition to his prolific composing career, he's active in environmental work.

Here's what he told NPR's Tom Huizinga about "Become Ocean":

When writer Julia Keller talks, you notice a touch of West Virginia — it is, after all, her home state. Her accent may have faded a bit during her newspaper career in Chicago, so she says when she started thinking about writing crime novels, she was happy to hear the Appalachian voices coming out of her memory.

"I was probably the most surprised person of all when I chose to set my fiction in West Virginia," she says. "[I] hadn't lived here in a long time, didn't really know that it moved in my blood — if it did."

The Oregonian Wins Pulitzer Prize for Editorial Writing

Apr 14, 2014
jclor / flickr

The Oregonian newspaper is among this year’s Pulitzer Prize winners. The organization is being recognized for a series of editorials it published last year on Oregon's Public Employee Retirement System, also known as PERS.

John Luther Adams, whose music is inspired by — and sometimes performed in — natural landscapes, has won the Pulitzer Prize for music for his symphonic work Become Ocean.

Many people know Rube Goldberg as an adjective — a shorthand description for a convoluted device or contraption. But Rube Goldberg was a real person — one who earned a Pulitzer Prize for editorial cartooning and who captivated imaginations with drawings of complex chain reactions that completed the simplest of tasks.

Goldberg died in 1970, but Jennifer George, his granddaughter, has collected the zany world he created in a coffee table book, The Art of Rube Goldberg: (A) Inventive (B) Cartoon (C) Genius.

Robert Stone won the National Book Award in 1975, for his second novel, Dog Soldiers. Since then, he's twice been a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, and nominated for or the recipient of a florist's display of other honors. Recently, when I asked some writers and English professors at a party to name the best novel ever written about Hollywood, Stone's Children of Light was the top choice.

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

Richard Russo, the writer who won the 2002 Pulitzer Prize for his book Empire Falls, published a new novel six months ago. If you're wondering how you missed it, it might be because Russo chose not to publish with a traditional publisher. There are no hardcover or paperback copies of Nate in Venice -- it's only available by subscription on Byliner, a digital publishing service, where you can only read it on an e-reader, phone or tablet.

What Does Electroshock Therapy Feel Like?

Jun 28, 2013

Part 1 of the TED Radio Hour episode Turning Points. Watch Sherwin Nuland's other TEDTalk on hope.

About Sherwin Nuland's TEDTalk