by Robert Bell
As part of its inaugural Summit for Ambitious Writers, the fine folks over at the Oxford American have included some events for those of us not attending the five-day, intensive writing workshop happening right now up on Petit Jean Mountain. OA Editor Marc Smirnoff will host "Interviews on the Mountain," a series of discussions with some big-name editors and writers, culminating with a discussion with New Yorker Editor David Remnick. The series kicks off Wednesday afternoon with Little Rock's own William Whitworth, who served as chief editor of The Atlantic Monthly for 20 years and is a veteran of the Arkansas Gazette and The New Yorker. Celebrated travel writer Pico Iyer, who Time dubbed "among the finest travel writers of his generation," is on tap for Thursday. The interview series is free, but registration is required, so sign up at summit.oxfordamerican.org. After the Remnick interview, stick around for a barbecue dinner ($15) and live music from Audrey Kelly and Don't Stop Please.
The OA is wrapping up the summit Saturday night at 7 p.m. with a humdinger of a shindig including the transcendently ramshackle psych-blues of Tyrannosaurus Chicken, the duo that swept the most recent Arkansas Times Musicians Showcase, followed by a performance from the True Soul Revue, the stone-cold house-rocking studio band for True Soul Records, the legendary Little Rock '70s funk and soul imprint.