Joanna Smith Rakoff

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Joanna Smith Rakoff has written for The New York Times, Time Out New York, The Los Angeles Times, Newsday, Vogue, O: The Oprah Magazine, and other publications. She holds a B.A. from Oberlin College; an M.A. from University College, London; and an M.F.A. from Columbia University. She lives in New York with her husband and son.

Photo Credit: Elena Seibert

Books by this Author

A Fortunate Age

Videos

My Life in 8 Words

Author Revealed

Q. What is your motto or maxim?

A. I'm afraid I don't have one.

Q. If you could be any person or thing, who or what would it be?

A. Again, my mind doesn't really work that way. I'm happy being myself.

Q. What is your biggest pet peeve?

A. I really hate the unnecessary use of quotation marks. As in, menus that offer "roast" chicken. Why, why?

Q. Who is your favorite fictional hero?

A. This is too difficult. I love the Dashwood sisters, Elinor and Marianne, in Sense and Sensibility, and Gwendolen Harleth from Daniel Deronda. Irene Heron from The Forsyte Saga. And, of course, Jane Eyre.

Q. What are your 5 favorite songs?

A. Right at the moment, let's see: I Wanna Know Girls, Portastatic; Ghosts, Laura Marling; Stars and Sons, Broken Social Scene; Staring at the Sun, TV on the Radio; Flume, Bon Iver. But this pretty random. I could just as easily list Wilco, Elvis Costello, The Smiths, Elliott Smith, and dozens more.

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