For the final episode of Breakfast in Montana, Russell Rowland and Charles Finn talk to poet Mary Jane Nealon about her remarkable memoir, Beautiful Unbroken, which was the recipient of the Bakeless Prize for Non-fiction, which is awarded by the Breadloaf Foundation. Nealon’s account of working with AIDS patients in New York City just […]
This episode is a bit of a departure from our usual format. Russell had the opportunity to do an interview with James Lee Burke for Distinctly Montana Magazine about the work of A.B. Guthrie. Both Russell and James are huge Guthrie fans, and Burke got to know him after he moved to Missoula in the […]
We’re happy to introduce a new co-host in this episode, as Montana Book Award winner Charles Finn (On a Benediction of Wind) joins Russell Rowland in a conversation with their old friend Shann Ray. Shann has published several books in a wide variety of genres, including American Copper and his excellent short story debut, […]
On a Benediction of Wind was just named the winner of the Montana Book Award days before we recorded this episode, so we’re thrilled to feature the beautiful poetry of Charles Finn, and talk to him and Barbara Michelman about how they came to create this fabulous collaboration of poetry and black and […]
Elise Atchison’s debut novel, Crazy Mountain, was the recipient of the Eludia Award, an award given to first-time women novelists over forty. She worked for over ten years on this book, which features a completely different point of view for each chapter. The novel takes place in a fictional region where the typical struggle […]
This episode pairs one of the most esteemed Native American authors of our time with a writer who started writing because of his influence and guidance. Debra Magpie Earling took her very first writing class from James Welch at the University of Washington, and would later study with him again at Cornell. Earling’s debut […]
The current poet laureate of Montana is a working class gentleman from Missoula who grew up in Alberton, where his father was a laborer. Mark has also worked in labor, driving truck and moving furniture. He brings an honest, unvarnished attitude to his work, and we have been huge fans for years. And and terms […]
For this episode, we were so honored to have a chance to sit down with our old friend, poet Greg Keeler. Greg taught at Montana State University for forty years, and toward the end of his career, he started writing a sonnet every day. He continues this practice to this day, but in 2018, Elk […]
For this episode, we had the pleasure of talking with our good friend Tom Harpole about his collection, Regarding Willingness. Tom wrote for national magazines for decades, but this collection consists of personal essays that Tom wrote through the years about his adventures in various parts of the world, including skydiving in Russia, and going […]
Breakfast In Montana · Episode Twenty-Six – Corrie Williamson, Stephen Ambrose. and Stephenie Ambrose Tubbs This past year marked the twenty-fifth anniversary of the publication of Undaunted Courage, which has become known as the bible for the Lewis and Clark Expedition. This book, written by Stephen Ambrose, had the feel of a novel, and captured […]
Breakfast In Montana · Episode 25 – Ryan Busse and Teddy “Blue” Abbott Ryan Busse worked as a top executive in the gun industry for several decades. “I sold millions of guns,” he says. But Busse became increasingly disillusioned with the NRA’s influence on the industry he loved, to the point that he felt […]
Breakfast In Montana · Episode Twenty-Four: Alan Weltzien and Thomas Savage Thomas Savage was a novelist who grew up in Beaverhead County, Montana, on a sheep ranch. He published a dozen novels but was sadly overlooked while he was alive, despite receiving resounding critical acclaim for his entire career. His work was rediscovered around the […]
Breakfast In Montana · Episode Twenty-Three – Norman Maclean and John Maclean John Maclean, son of Montana icon Norman Maclean, has become a fine writer in his own right, and he recently published what he calls ‘a chronicle’ of his life with his father and his own relationship to Norman’s enormously successful novella, A […]
Breakfast In Montana · Episode Twenty-Two – Doug Peacock and William Kittredge For our twenty-second episode, we had the great pleasure of sitting down for over an hour with Doug Peacock, who has been fighting to save the grizzly bear for decades now, and when you read his fabulous book, Grizzly Years, you get […]
Breakfast In Montana · Episode Twenty – One – Marc Beaudin And Robert Pirsig For this episode, we interview Livingston poet and owner of Elk River Books Marc Beaudin, about his latest collection, Life List, which was named an Honorable Book by the latest Montana Book Awards. And we also discuss a classic […]
Breakfast In Montana · Episode Twenty – James Welch And Joey Running Crane For this episode, we’re breaking out of the box a little by exploring the world of literature from the perspective of a musician. Joey Running Crane is an accomplished recording artist from the Blackfeet Reservation. He has recorded with several bands, […]
Breakfast In Montana · Episode Nineteen – Tami Haaland and Madeline DeFrees For Episode Nineteen, we talk to one of our most recent poet laureates, Tami Haaland, about two of her collections, When We Wake in the Night, much of which was written while she was a mother of teenage boys, and What Does Not […]
Breakfast In Montana · Episode Eighteen Melissa Kwasny and Frank Linderman For our eighteenth episode, we talk to Montana Poet Laureate Melissa Kwasny about her most recent book, a departure from her usual work called Putting on the Dog. Melissa was commissioned to write this book about the nature of clothes and the materials […]
For this episode of Breakfast in Montana, Aaron and Russell talk about two very powerful collections of stories, Black Cherries, published in 1931 by Grace Stone Coates. One of the stories from this collection, “Wild Plums,” was included in a collection of the best 100 stories from the 20th Century, compiled by John Updike. The […]
Breakfast In Montana · Episode Sixteen – Sean Hill and D'Arcy McNickle For our nineteenth episode, we discuss two powerful books, first a collection of contemporary poetry by recent Montana arrival Sean Hill, a Stegner Fellow from Stanford University, as well as a veteran of two other graduate programs, at the University of Georgia and […]
For Episode Fifteen, Aaron Parrett and Russell Rowland have a fabulous conversation with John Taliaferro, biographer extraordinaire, about his new book, Grinnell, about George Bird Grinnell, the man who was called the Father of American Conservation at the time of his death. We also talk about a couple of Grinnell’s own […]
For this episode of Breakfast in Montana, a podcast about Montana books, we discuss two award-winning novels, both by women. The Flicker of Old Dreams, by Susan Henderson, won the Spur Award for Fiction, as well as the Willa Cather Award, and is a finalist for the High Plains Book Award for fiction. Mildred Walker’s […]
In this episode, we discuss two books from Missoula writers. Chris La Tray’s book One Sentence Journal won this year’s Montana Book Award, and it’s an interesting collection of vignettes, and aphorisms that take you deep into the heart of a man who is searching for his place in Montana. We believe the second book […]
For episode twelve, we discuss two books by legendary Livingston writers. Tim Cahill was a writer for Rolling Stone back when they were first getting off the ground, and went on to co-found Outside Magazine, which published most of the stories in his collection, Jaguars Ripped My Flesh. William ‘Gatz’ Hjortsberg published many novels, the […]
In the eleventh episode of Breakfast in Montana, hosts Aaron Parrett and Russell Rowland talk about an unlikely pairing between the latest collection, All That Held Us, by contemporary poet Henrietta Goodman, who hails from North Carolina, and The Hawkline Monster, a novel by acclaimed author Richard Brautigan.
For our tenth episode, we discuss the new collection of poetry, Woods and Clouds Interchangeable, from former Montana Poet Laureate Earl Craig, one of the most entertaining and engaging writers with who we’ve had the pleasure of talking. Earl goes into great depth about the process not only of writing, but of how he put […]
For our ninth episode, we break away from our usual format of talking about two Montana books to focus on a singular Montana writer, Richard Wheeler. Richard has published more than 80 novels in his lifetime, despite not getting published until he was almost fifty years old. His novels have been finalists for the Spur […]
In the eighth episode of Breakfast in Montana, authors Aaron Parrett and Russell Rowland discuss two outstanding memoirs. The first is The Story of Mary MacLane, also known as I Await the Devil’s Coming, a worldwide sensation when it was published in 1902 by a nineteen-year-old aristocrat from Butte. The second is Driven: A White-Knuckled […]
For this episode, we discuss two powerful poetry collections. The first is a collection called Notes for a Novel, by Frieda Fligelman, who was a strong presence in Helena in the early twentieth century, but not that well known as a poet. She was a scholar in linguistics and an activist in many political causes, […]
For Episode Six, Aaron and Russell discuss two underappreciated Montana books. Matt Pavelich published a collection of short stories called Survivors Said, and it includes one of the best short stories either of us have ever read, called “Himself, Adrift.” This story, told from the point of view of Thomas Meagher, the second governor of […]
Ivan Doig was one of the most popular writers from Montana, the author of eleven books, seven of which were novels, including English Creek and Dancing at the Rascal Fair. Three were nonfiction, including the highly acclaimed memoir This House of Sky, which was a finalist for the National Book Award. A former ranch hand, […]
In this episode of Breakfast in Montana, hosts Russell Rowland and Aaron Parrett discuss two books by Montana authors, The Hanging Tree by Dorothy Johnson, and Shaking Out the Dead, by Kate Cholewa. The Hanging Tree was made into a film, one of several Johnson stories that made it to film. We discuss the myth about women writers having a different style.
For the third episode of Breakfast in Montana, we discuss A Good Day to Die, by Jim Harrison, author of Legends of the Fall and other classic novels about the West, as well as a novel by his daughter Jamie Harrison Potenberg called The Widow Nash. There are several interesting parallels between these two novels, despite the fact that they take place in different times and despite the fact that they are very different writers.
For this episode, we discuss two mysteries. Both of these novels feature protagonists that are poets, which makes for an interesting discussion.
The theme of the first episode of Breakfast in Montana was Butte, which has a much richer history of good literature than most people would guess. This episode was produced by Brie Ripley, and features the music of Aaron Parrett and Ricky Skaggs.