Midweek Teaser: Lev Raphael Shares his Wisdom on Writing, Judaism, Sex, and More…

When Erika started reading Lev Raphael’s work, library catalogues were kept on an early type of computer called a “commodore,” pictured above.

While we can’t take too much time away from bringing you all of the content we want to, we’re going to take a minute and breathe and exchange a few pats on the back and hugs after our first live event(s)–our open mic poetry event both online (via Zoom) and in-person at Words Matter Bookstore in Pitman, New Jersey. We’ll have a more complete report on those, and perhaps even some video for you. It was an exciting night for the entire Boiler Room and our friends, families, loved ones and special guests. 

Meanwhile, we invite you to get comfortable as we bring you more of Erika and Andrew’s conversation with Lev Raphael. The three of them don’t waste any time at all before they get to the good bits, which, in this case, means breaking down the process of writing a sex scene. 

There’s also some celebrity gossip, a detour to the the Gilded Age, then a whiplash-inducing leap forward to Erica Jong, (and if you’re interested in the prurient stuff, stay tuned for more about our own Erika Grumet’s teenage discovery of Erica Jong), followed by some banter about books that have been, or should be, turned into movies. The conversation takes you through an exploration of coming out, intersectional identity, and why we haven’t seen the great explosion of queer literature that we seemed to be teetering on the brink of in the 90s. And we couldn’t bring you a conversation with Lev without talking about Jewish identity. 

Andrew and Erika are grateful for all of the time Lev spent chatting with us and his continued support of our work, and that sense of delight really comes out in the recording. We really look forward to having him visit the Boiler Room again. We’ll have a seat waiting for him.

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