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Writing a First Novel

Nick Dybek

Date, Location

    Author Nick Dybek

    Granta, the magazine of new writing, heralded Nick Dybek in its New Voices series for his first novel, When Captain Flint Was Still a Good Man, released in April. In an interview with Granta, Nick described his desire “to write about a setting that fuelled my imagination . . . one that would inspire invention.”

    Reading Shakespeare’s Richard II helped Nick discover a story he wanted to tell. The play’s haunting images evoked new scenes in Nick’s mind. Hear how he began to trust the power of invention, how he let himself imagine the seeds of narrative, and how that inspiration led him to Washington’s Olympic Peninsula.


    Library Journal proclaims Captain Flint “A captivating, literary coming-of-age novel. . . . with a deep, otherworldly quality.”

    “Robert Louis Stevenson would be proud of Nick Dybek. . . . He delivers a page-turner full of danger, secrets, and betrayals.” ~ Stewart O’Nan

    “An authentic, atmospheric, coming-of-age story with a painful dilemma. . . . A terrific debut.” ~ C. J. Box

    “In this tale of good men ‘doing unspeakable harm to other people,’ Dybek proves himself an observant, appealing writer.” ~ Kirkus Reviews

    Copies of When Captain Flint Was Still a Good Man will be available for purchase from Bookbug at the event.