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Meghan Daum biography

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Meghan Daum
Alexandra Dean Grossi

Meghan Daum

Meghan Daum Biography

Meghan Daum is the author of Life Would Be Perfect If I Lived In That House, a personal chronicle of real estate addiction and obsessive fascination with houses, as well as the novel The Quality of Life Report and the essay collections My Misspent Youth and The Unspeakable: And Other Subjects of Discussion.

Since 2005 she has written a weekly column for The Los Angeles Times. She has contributed to public radio's Morning Edition, Marketplace and This American Life and has written for numerous publications, including The New Yorker, Harper's, GQ, Vogue, Self, New York, Travel & Leisure, BlackBook, Harper's Bazaar, The Village Voice, and The New York Times Book Review.

Equal parts reporter, storyteller, and satirist, Daum has inspired controversy over a range of topics, including social politics, class warfare and the semiotics of shag carpet. Meghan's work is included in dozens of college textbooks and anthologies.

Born in California in 1970, Daum was raised primarily on the east coast and is a graduate of Vassar College and the MFA writing program at Columbia University's School of the Arts as well as at the California Institute for the Arts and the Nebraska Summer Writers' Conference.

She spent several years in New York City and later Nebraska. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, Alan Zarembo, and their sheepdog, Rex.

Meghan was a 2013 mentor for PEN USA's Emerging Voices Program. She also volunteers as a foster child advocate for Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of Los Angeles County.

Link to Meghan's website

This biography was last updated on 11/20/2014.

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Interview

An Interview With Meghan Daum

The parallel between your life and Lucinda's is unmistakable. You once worked for a fashion magazine and then moved to Nebraska. At what stage in your own move did the novel idea come into play? How much of your real-life experience influenced the book?

I'd been in Nebraska for well over a year before I started the novel. I remember the day I actually began writing. There were several inches of snow on the ground and it was the coldest winter anyone had seen in years. I'd been thinking a lot about a phenomenon called prairie madness, which was a kind of mental illness that afflicted many of the early settlers to the region, particularly those who came from the east during the Homestead Act of 1863. It was believed that the combination of isolation on the plains and, moreover, the incessant shrieking wind literally drove people insane. It seemed to affect women in particular, many of whom had come from the east, usually at the behest of their husbands, and were used to more refined conditions and larger communities. The deal with the Homestead Act was that families were given 160-acre plots of land, which they could own outright if they managed to farm it and live on it ...

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The Quality of Life Report jacket
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All the books below are recommended as readalikes for Meghan Daum but some maybe more relevant to you than others depending on which books by the author you have read and enjoyed. So look for the suggested read-alikes by title linked on the right.
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  • Caroline Hwang

    Caroline Hwang

    Caroline Hwang is a magazine editor and writer whose work has appeared in Glamour, Redbook, Self, Newsweek, Mademoiselle, CosmoGirl, and YM. She is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania with an M.F.A. from New York ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    The Quality of Life Report

    Try:
    In Full Bloom
    by Caroline Hwang

  • Carrie Kabak

    Carrie Kabak

    Carrie Kabak is an author, illustrator and graphic designer. She is the author of an Independent Booksellers' Pick, Cover the Butter. Her essays appear in "For Keeps" and "He Said What?" (Seal Press), "Exit Laughing" (North ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    The Quality of Life Report

    Try:
    Cover The Butter
    by Carrie Kabak

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