The Chills at Will Podcast podcast

Episode 162 with Erin Keane, Editor-in-Chief of Salon Magazine and Profound and Well-Researched Writer of the Moving, Incisive, and Haunting Runaway: Notes From the Myths that Made Me

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Episode 162 Notes and Links to Erin Keane’s Work


    On Episode 162 of The Chills at Will Podcast, Pete welcomes Erin Keane, and the two discuss, among other things, her early voracious reading, her work as writer and editor and Editor-in-Chief, and ideas from her memoir of life imitating art, art versus artist, patterns of misogyny and burdens laid upon women and girls, a “runway” versus a “missing girl,” and other salient issues and themes that come from her mother and family’s stories. 


   Erin Keane was born in New Jersey and raised in Kentucky and feels both states are misunderstood.

RUNAWAY: Notes on the Myths that Made Me, her debut full-length nonfiction book, is a memoir in essays about her parents/pop culture/gender.

She’s also the author of three collections of poetry: Demolition of the Promised Land (Typecast Publishing, 2014 — out of print), Death-Defying Acts (WordFarm, 2010), and The Gravity Soundtrack, (WordFarm, 2007).

She’s Editor in Chief At Salon, she writes mostly about culture and drinks, including the cocktails-and-mindfulness column The Oracle Pour, in which she dresses her writing about life up in drink recipe clothes. She’s a public radio alum and daily newspaper-trained, and she cut her teeth in the beautiful wild world of the alt-weekly.

Erin is a member of the graduate faculty of Spalding University’s Sena Naslund-Karen Mann School of Writing, where she teaches creative nonfiction, poetry, and professional writing.



Buy Runaway: Notes on The Myths that Made Me


Erin Keane's Website


“Why do guys like George Santos lie? I asked myself the same thing about my father” from Salon Magazine


Lorraine Berry Reviews Runaway for The Los Angeles Times


Excerpt from Runaway in Salon Magazine: “A girl's skeleton in the museum: On runaways, the Jersey Shore and a cold case that haunted me”

At about 6:25, Erin describes her childhood love of, and experiences with, reading, storytelling, and the written word 


At about 10:50, Pete shouts out Shel Silverstein’s legacy, and Erin references being “weirdly seen” in some of the darker literature intended for kids 


At about 13:00, Erin lists books by Stephen King as inspirations for her in many ways, including in the ways in which King incorporated pop culture into his work; David Wojahn, too, is cited for his daring and skillful poetry


At about 17:00-20:00, Erin shouts out Predator from Ander Monson as a recent book that has thrilled and impressed her, as well as Liz Prato’s Kids in America


At about 22:45, Erin responds to Pete’s questions about reading for pleasure 


At about 24:30, Erin discusses her Dec. 31 article for Salon about George Santos and his lies; she discusses it as a “timely topical book tie-in essay” as the article and Erin’s book discuss her father’s problems with truth 


At about 30:00, Erin gives background on seeds for her book Runaway, particularly a 2015 expose by Mariel Hemingway and how it led Erin to completely reexamine Woody Allen’s Manhattan in relation to her parents’ own relationship 


At about 33:35, Pete and Erin discuss ideas of cognitive dissonance involving her father and those who saw the marriage between a 15 yr old and mid 30 yr old, including Erin’s grandparents


At about 36:35, Pete and Erin muse about Erin’s grandmother’s phone habits and Erin describes the research she did to find out about phone card “hacks” in the 1970s when Erin’s mom had run away but was able to use public phones


At about 41:10, Erin examines the ways in which her grandparents saw her mother’s years on the road and ideas of generational guilt and penance and lessons learned 


At about 42:15, Erin discusses the ways in which her mother/daughter relationship and her and her brother’s behavior was affected by their mother’s history and parents’ reactions


At about 45:00, Pete cites some profound lines from the beginning chapter that deal with misogyny and allowing male artists huge leeway with their art often being dismissed as distinct from their motivations/actions 


At about 46:20, Erin speaks about ideas of “wayward” men being “saved” by women and the burdens and unfairness involved 


At about 49:20, Pete asks Erin about her usage of “survivor’s guilt” in the book


At about 52:40, Erin discusses the horrific case of “Sandy” at the Smithsonian as a microcosm of the greater runaway “epidemic” of the 1970s


At about 57:25, The two discuss ideas of the connections between women’s agency and men’s comfort and how this played out in her family’s stories 


At about 1:01:00, Erin details her mother’s struggles and tries to home in on reasons for her leaving home at age 13


At about 1:04:30, Erin discusses her research for the book in light of a famous journalistic credo


At about 1:07:45, Pete and Erin discusses some happy moments in her mother’s story, and also some scary and traumatic events 


At about 1:09:00, Erin analyzes an incident from her high school years that has grown in importance and significance as the years have gone on, as well as how the incident was informed by her mother’s history  


At about 1:12:00, Pete reflects on his reaction to the above story, and ideas of projection and “accuser/accused”


At about 1:13:15, Erin expands upon ideas of the leeway and honors bestowed upon men, and how women (including Cait O’Riordan and Yoko Ono and other pop culture/artistic figures) have been minimized by society


At about 1:19:00, Pete compliments the book as a whole, including its profound ending image 

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   Please tune in for Episode 163 with Margo Candela, whose decade-long hiatus from book publishing ended recently with the beautiful and funny and haunting and profound book, The Neapolitan Sisters.

   The episode will air on January 31.

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