Sharon Olds grew up in a Calvinist home in Berkeley, CA. She received a BA from Stanford University in 1964 and an English PhD from Columbia University in 1972. Olds is known for candidly exploring the ordinary and unpleasant--from toilets to take-out.
Olds did not publish her first poetry collect
Benjamin Kunkel, novelist and founding editor at n+1, grew up in Colorado. He attended California's rural, all-male Deep Springs College, before finishing his undergraduate degree at Harvard University. He later received an MFA from Columbia University.
Kunkel, who has contributed essays and artic