Novelist and short story author Phillippe Diederich spoke at the March 1 meeting of the Sarasota Fiction Writers. Diederich discussed what’s important in a story, the crazy journey of becoming a writer, and the process of publishing and promotion.
His debut novel, Sofrito, follows the son of Cuban exiles on a trip to Havana in search of a recipe that will save his failing New York City restaurant. In 2015, the Los Angeles Times called it one of the “23 fiction books you’ll want to read – and share – this summer.”
His forthcoming novel, “Playing for the Devil’s Fire,” tells the story of a 13-year-old boy’s search for his parents who disappear after “narcos” move into their town in rural Mexico.
Diederich was born in the Dominican Republic and raised in Mexico City and Miami. Before turning to writing, he worked as a photojournalist for 15 years. He holds an MFA in creative writing from the University of South Florida.
Diederich’s short stories have been published in a number of literary journals including Quarterly West, Hobart Pulp and High Desert Journal. He is the recipient of a Florida Individual Artist Fellowship, an Elizabeth George Foundation Grant, the Chris O’Malley Prize for Fiction from the Madison Review and a Ringling Towers Grant from the Sarasota County Artists Alliance. Four of his stories have been nominated for Pushcart Prizes.
Learn more about Diederich by visiting www.phildiederich.com.