- Fiction and Creative Nonfiction Mentor
- MFA in Writing
POPE BROCK received his BA in English from Harvard University and his MFA in Acting from New York University School of the Arts. He is author of three books. Indiana Gothic (Doubleday/Nan A. Talese) is a fictionalized account of the murder of his great-grandfather in 1908. Charlatan: America’s Most Dangerous Huckster, the Man Who Pursued Him, and the Age of Flimflam (Crown), is a nonfiction narrative about the most successful quack in American history. One of New York Times critic Janet Maslin’s top ten of the year, it was the inspiration for the Sundance prize-winning documentary NUTS! and has been optioned for film by Matt Damon. More importantly, it has been recently translated into Russian and Korean, apparently because of the title character’s resemblance to Donald Trump. Brock’s third book, Another Fine Mess: Life on Tomorrow’s Moon (Red Hen Press), is a collection of satirical essays. His profiles, investigations, travel writing, and humor have appeared in GQ, Rolling Stone, Esquire, Talk, People and elsewhere, and he has contributed regularly to the London Sunday Times Magazine. He has been awarded residencies at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts and Ragdale, and he spins the platters that matter at a community radio station in Portland, Maine.
“Great nonfiction writers come in all styles and colors, but what unites them is relentless curiosity. You have to love over-researching; if you don’t leave a lot on the cutting room floor, you haven’t gone deep enough. I think that to write good subjective or creative nonfiction, you have to be objective first – to park your opinions going in. Being surprised is part of the job and a lot of the fun. The work often lands you in strange scenes and situations you’d never have experienced otherwise, which gives you something to talk about later in bars. A good journalist also needs to learn how to interview people. It may not be as complicated as playing the violin, but it is an art, not to mention a privilege.”