Colin Jost's new memoir, A Very Punchable Face, describes his experiences growing up in a middle-class household on Staten Island. "Part of writing this book was being excited to talk about parts of my life and weird episodes in my life that I thought that would be entertaining for people," he says. Or, he adds, for people to "just get another chance to laugh at me."
As a black gay kid growing up in Texas in the 1990s, poet Saeed Jones remembers getting negative messages about his identity from every aspect of his life. It was around the time of Matthew Shepard's murder in Wyoming, and Jones felt alone and unsafe.
On his first day in the seventh grade, Sherman Alexie opened up his school-assigned math book and found his mother's maiden name written in it. "I was looking at a 30-year-old math book," he says — and that was the moment he knew that he needed to leave his home.
Actor Giancarlo Esposito talks about coming back to play Gus Fring in Better Call Saul, after originating the role in Breaking Bad. . . and how being bi-racial has affected his life and career. He's the son of an white Italian father, and an African-american mother, who was an opera singer.
After years trying to conceive, novelist Jennifer Gilmore and her husband decided to adopt. What they thought would be a relatively simple process was instead a long and painful one. In her latest novel, Gilmore channels these autobiographical experiences into fiction.