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The latest from award-winning author Lori Jakiela

ISBN-13: 978-0-9915469-9-2
Atticus Books/October 31, 2023


They Write Your Name on a Grain of Rice—the latest book from award-winning Pittsburgh author Lori Jakiela--is much more than a cancer memoir. It's a pause between polarities. Cancer is almost an afterthought. Inspired by Amy Krouse Rosenthal's Encyclopedia of an Ordinary Life, it celebrates the tiny moments that make up a time capsule of a life.


A weirdly funny book about mortality, Rice is also about family, genetics, nature vs. nurture, the Rust Belt, EPA clean-up zones, emotional support peacocks, box turtles, Emily Dickinson, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Andy Warhol(a), and so much more. A fresh voice aligned with the work of classic stream-of-consciousness writers like Richard Brautigan and Virginia Woolf, Jakiela explores the way a mind works—complete with leaps and spirals—while reflecting on a life thoroughly lived against a dire breast cancer diagnosis.


Half new and selected essays, half whirlwind memoir, Rice is experimental in both voice and form, and offers a fresh approach to age-old questions about life, love, mortality, and the fine art of living, even so.


What others are saying about Lori Jakiela:


"(Jakiela) is an exceptionally talented writer who is only one New York Times book review away from a national reputation." – Tony Norman, The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Belief Is Its Own Kind of Truth, Maybe
A Memoir of Adoption, Family, and Coming Home
Winner of Stanford University's Saroyan Prize for Creative Nonfiction

"Adoptees look out at the world from the eyes of what was lost. We can't help it, but we can transform it. Lori Jakiela's new memoir -- Belief Is Its Own Kind of Truth, Maybe -- is a beautifully written journey into one woman's process of letting go of what was lost, and the messy dignity of human transformation. Her story is one of life, of reaching for life. With a deep gift for storytelling and unsparing, beautifully gritty self-examination, she brings the reader on the harrowing journey with her. It's an important ride, and an important book." singer-songwriter Mary Gauthier

How Do You Like It Now, Gentlemen? Poems at Mid-Life
Winner of the 2021 Brickhouse Books' Wicked Woman Prize

Winner of the 2021 Wicked Woman prize for poems that focus on a woman who somehow ''broke the mold.'' In this collection, the speaker of the poems sees herself as such a Wicked Woman in that she has defied numerous conventions, suffered, survived, and. . .is able to laugh. Readers will hope there is a bit of themselves in this tough, tender woman and poet.



"Jakiela, like such top-tier American poets as Grace Paley, Edward Field, and Billy Collins, is able to write confessional poems that are equal parts ruminative and humorous, and she does it all while sustaining a gorgeous lyricism. . . . It's impossible to say exactly what I loved about How Do You Like it Now, Gentlemen? her new, prize-winning collection of poems. She writes so beautifully about such a variety of subjects—motherhood, literature, small-towns, marriage, Walt Whitman, fathers, hometowns, middle-age, Hemingway, difficult jobs – that all I know with any certainty is that this is as warm-hearted a book as I've ever read." -- Kareem Tayyar, author of ORANGE COUNTY and more. 

Portrait of the Artist as a Bingo Worker: Essays on Work and the Writing Life

""Lori Jakiela's Portrait of the Artist as a Bingo Worker is a hilarious, working-class hero of an essay collection. It's full of mall employees, flight attendants, working mothers, struggling writers, loving daughters, and adopted children, who all end up being one person named Lori Jakiela. A book of many masks, it proves the saying: there is no such thing as an ordinary life." -- Scott McClanahan, author of The Sarah Book, Crapalachia and more

The Bridge to Take When Things Get SeriousĀ 

"Lori Jakiela is the queen of the wise one-liner. Fiercely sad and heartbreakingly funny, The Bridge to Take When Things Get Serious is about the mystery of the people closest to us-how they drive us crazy and why we need them so much."

--Stewart O'Nan, author of The Odds

Miss New York Has Everything

"Don't let the smiling stewardess on the cover fool you: Jakiela's memoir has more in common with Chuck Klosterman than Coffee, Tea or Me?"

--Publishers Weekly

Spot the Terrorist!
Flight Attendant Poems from the Not-Always-Friendly Skies

"Terrific poems by a true airline survivor. Full of humor and heart." -- Stephen Slater, legendary flight attendant