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THE BIBLIO FILE is one of the world's leading podcasts about "the book" and an inquiry into the wider world of book culture. Hosted by NIGEL BEALE it features wide ranging conversations with authors, poets, book publishers, booksellers, book editors, book collectors, book makers, book scholars, book critics, book designers, book publicists, literary agents and other best practitioners on Robert Darnton's "communications circuit."

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Sep 13, 2020

John Freeman is an American writer and a literary critic. He was the editor of Granta from 2009 to 2013, and is a former president of the National Book Critics Circle. His writing has appeared in more than 200 English-language publications around the world and he currently edits a series of anthologies of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry entitled Freeman's, published in partnership with Grove/Atlantic and The New School. Reason enough, I figured, to want to talk to him about the role of the editor. 
 
His second book, a collection of his interviews with major contemporary writers titled How to Read a Novelist, was published in the U.S. in 2013 by FSG and features profiles of Margaret Atwood, John Updike, Geoff Dyer, Toni Morrison, Haruki Murakami, and others. It's the reason I wanted to talk to him about interviewing authors (plus the fact that I've watched him skillfully question authors on stage - well on Youtube - many times).
 
During his time with the National Book Critics Circle, John launched a campaign to raise awareness of the cutbacks in book coverage by the U.S. national print media and to save book review sections. We talk about how this effort resulted in the establishment of Literary Hub