As Told To
As Told To
Oct 24, 2023
Episode 50: Dani Shapiro
Play • 1 hr 8 min

“I’ve been obsessed with the corrosive power of secrets since my first novel,” reflects the best-selling novelist and memoirist Dani Shapiro, a writer who has been mining her own secrets since she first put pen to paper.

In a far-ranging, free-wheeling interview with host Daniel Paisner, pulled from a “Book & Author Luncheon” program sponsored by the Friends of the Port Washington (N.Y.) Library in May, 2023, she reflects on her inspirations for her most recent novel Signal Fires, New York Times best-seller and National Jewish Book Award-winner now out in paperback, and for her gripping 2019 memoir Inheritance, also a New York Times best-seller and National Jewish Book Award-winner.

Her fascination with secrets is at the heart of Dani’s wildly popular podcast Family Secrets, now in its ninth season, which invites guests to examine the secrets they choose to carry and the ones they choose to share, and it is at the heart of this conversation. “We all live in aftermath, all the time,” she tells Paisner. “Aftermath is the story of our lives, really. And the question is, What do we do in that aftermath? And how does an incident or a secret that is kept impact us over a long lifetime?” 

Join us as Dani Shapiro looks to answer her own question—and in the process, sheds meaningful light on the stuff of all fiction and memoir. 

Learn more about Dani Shapiro:

More resources mentioned in the episode: 

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