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Egan Shorto COMBO
March Wednesday

Virtual Program | When History Meets Imagination: Russell Shorto and Jennifer Egan on Fiction, Non-Fiction, and Where They Cross


Join non-fiction writer Russell Shorto and novelist Jennifer Egan for a one-on-one conversation about fact, fabrication, and the complicated area in between.

Shorto’s new family memoir Smalltime tells the story of his grandfather, a small town mobster. To research it, Shorto spent years listening to aging witnesses’ first-hand accounts, combining their memories with archival material.  For her novel Manhattan Beach, Egan also dug deeply into archives and eyewitness memories, yet ultimately her fictional work enjoyed a license to embellish. Together they explore questions of reliable narrators, where facts leave off and imagination begins, the urge for fiction writers to represent history accurately and non-fiction writers to maintain a lively narrative, and how a writer judges when the lines have been crossed.


Wednesday, March 03, 2021

6:30 pm

Virtual Program via Zoom Webinar


  • Free
Register Here


  • Shorto Russell Photographer Credit Photo by Pamela Twigg

    Russell Shorto

    Photo by Pamela Twigg

    Russell Shorto is the best-selling author of The Island at the Center of the World, Amsterdam, Revolution Song, and Smalltime, a contributing writer at the New York Times Magazine. He lives in Cumberland, Maryland.

  • Jennifer Egan photo credit is to Pieter van Hattem_hr

    Jennifer Egan

    Photo by Pieter van Hattam

    Jennifer Egan is the author of several novels and a short story collection.  Her most recent novel, Manhattan Beach, a New York Times bestseller, was awarded the 2018 Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction, and was chosen as New York City’s One Book One New York read.  Her previous novel, A Visit From the Goon Squad, won the 2011 Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Critics Circle Award, and the Los Angeles Times book prize, and was recently named one of the best books of the decade by Time Magazine, Entertainment Weekly, and several others.  Also a journalist, she has written frequently in the New York Times Magazine.  She recently completed a term as President of PEN America.