Episode 45: Crafting Nonfiction – Interview with Joe Wenke

by Gabriela Pereira
published in Podcast

Welcome to another awesome interview episode of DIY MFA Radio! Today I’m so excited to introduce you to author Joe Wenke, and share this interview with him.

In this interview, Joe shares insights and techniques he learned from writing a piece of narrative nonfiction based on conversations and interviews. As I discovered from our conversation, there is a lot of invisible craft behind this style of nonfiction. In our conversation, Joe gives us a glimpse of how he put his book The Human Agenda together.

About Joe Wenke

JOE WENKE is a writer, social critic and LGBTQI rights activist. He is the founder and publisher of Trans Über, a publishing company with a focus on promoting LGBTQ rights, free thought and equality for all people. Wenke is the author of several books, including The Talk Show: A Novel, Free Air: Poems; Papal Bull: An Ex-Catholic Calls Out the Catholic Church; You Got To Be Kidding! A Radical Satire of the Bible; and Mailer’s America.

About “The Human Agenda”

THE HUMAN AGENDA is a book about sexual orientation and gender identity, with a special focus on “finding common ground in our shared humanity.” In this book, Wenke records conversations he had with LGBTQI leaders, talking about their lives, goals, and dreams. Wenke’s hope is that by getting a glimpse into these people’s lives, struggles and experiences, readers will be able to empathize with them where formerly there might be less of an opportunity for that. As he says in his interview, Wenke wants to show “that we’re all just human.”

In this interview Joe and I talk about…

  • His process for writing The Human Agenda
  • Elements of craft involved in writing nonfiction
  • How he prepared, researched and collected the conversations for his book
  • Taking “raw material” interviews and shaping them into a cohesive whole
  • The importance of finding a like-minded community of support
  • How to recognize what works and embrace your own process

Plus, Joe shares his #1 piece of advice for writers.

Resource Recap

If you’d like to know more about Joe and his upcoming book The Human Agenda: Conversations about Sexual Orientation & Gender Identity, you can visit his website at www.joewenke.org, or follow him on Twitter and Facebook.

Link to Episode 45

(Right-click to download.)

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Until next week, keep writing and keep being awesome.


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