Writer Nick Flynn was working in a homeless shelter in his 20s when his father — an alcoholic and self-proclaimed writer who left when Flynn was a baby — showed up as a client. His story is now a movie called Being Flynn, starring Paul Dano and Robert De Niro.
The former poet laureate reflects on his brother's passing in the new poem "August Notebook: A Death." The elegy is included in Hass' new collection, The Apple Trees at Olema, which includes material from his first five works — as well as new poems on the art of storytelling and personal relations in a violent world.
The friendship between Steve Lopez, a Los Angeles Times columnist, and Nathaniel Ayers, a homeless musician, has inspired newspaper columns, a book and now a movie. In 2008, Lopez joined Fresh Air to describe his friendship with Ayers.
Three years ago, journalist Steve Lopez met a homeless musician on skid row in Los Angeles. He soon learned that the man, Nathaniel Ayers, had once been a promising violinist, and that he had left the Juilliard School because of his struggle with mental illness. Ayers is the subject of Lopez's new book, The Soloist.
Writer Lee Stringer. He spent eleven years on the streets of New York City, living n the tunnels under Grand Central Terminal, addicted to crack. His acclaimed memoir "Grand Central Winter: Stories from the Street" (Washington Square Press) chronicled his unraveling, from a marketing executive to being homeless and crack addicted. He collaborated on his new book with Kurt Vonnegut: "Like Shaking Hands with God: a conversation about writing" (Seven Stories Press)