Nishanth Injam - "The Best Possible Experience" - Nina Li Coomes

Tuesday, July 11, 2023 - 6:00pm - 7:00pm
Event Presenter/Author: 
Nishanth Injam

Nishanth Injam will discuss The Best Possible Experience. He will be joined in conversation by Nina Li Coomes.

This event is in-person at the Seminary Co-op.


About the book: Vivid, vibrant, and unwaveringly affecting, The Best Possible Experience brings us intimate, impeccably realized accounts of individuals living in one of the most populous countries in the world, and its American diaspora, all haunted, in every sense of the word, by a loss of home. Classically elegant in prose and consistently modern in outlook, Injam’s stories question what it means to have a home, to return home, and show, above all, that home is not a place so much as a people ready to accept you as you are. We see a young man trapped on a bus to visit his parents as his fellow passengers vanish into the restroom. A family, newly in America, determined to host a perfect luncheon for their son’s white classmate, with no idea what to serve him. A woman who returns to a small village in India every summer to visit the grandfather who raised her, who lives with the ghosts of his son and wife. And a man preparing for his Green Card interview with the American woman he’s paid to marry him. A sui generis talent, Injam first started writing after coming to America from India in his twenties. The Best Possible Experience, his profoundly personal debut collection, delivers a universal inquiry into the idea of belonging and preserves in writing a home he left behind before it was lost to him forever.

About the author: Nishanth Injam received an MFA from the University of Michigan’s Helen Zell Writers’ Program, where he won the Chamberlain Award and the Frederick Busch Prize in Creative Writing. He is the recipient of a PEN/Dau Prize for Best Debut Short Story and the Cecelia Joyce Johnson Emerging Writer Award from the Key West Literary Seminar. His work has appeared in The Virginia Quarterly ReviewThe Georgia Review—which won an ASME Award in fiction for its publication of his work—and Catapult's Best Debut Short Stories 2021.

About the interlocutor: Nina Li Coomes is a Japanese and American writer. She was born in Nagoya, and currently resides in Chicago, where she is a student at the Litowitz MFA & MA in nonfiction.  Her writing has appeared in The AtlanticGuernica  and Catapult, among other places. Her work has been nominated for a Pushcart Prizea Chicago Review of Books Award, and was listed as a Notable Mention in Best American Travel Writing 2020.  She is a film reviewer and regular contributor at the Chicago READER.  Previously, she worked as a television news producer for a major Japanese news network, as well as a research assistant at the Program on U.S.-Japan Relations at Harvard University.  In 2016, she helped to produceもし、あなたの家族が…〜日本の移植医療に未来はあるのか〜」an award-winning documentary about pediatric organ transplant policy between the U.S. and Japan.  Currently, she works with clients across the globe, assisting with translation and localization services in English and Japanese. 

Event Location: 
Seminary Co-op Bookstore
5751 S Woodlawn Ave
Chicago, IL 60637