Australian-born Geraldine Brooks was a prize-winning journalist before becoming a critically acclaimed novelist. Brooks, a Columbia Journalism School graduate and a former Wall Street Journal foreign correspondent who covered crises in the Middle East, Africa and the Balkans, is the author of five historical novels and three works of non-fiction. Her latest novel, “The Secret Chord,” published on October 6, imagines the life of Biblical King David during the Second Iron Age in Israel. Brooks was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in fiction in 2006 for her novel “March,” a Civil-War era love story about the absent father in the Louisa May Alcott novel, “Little Women.” Her other novels are: “Caleb’s Crossing,” about the first Native American to graduate from Harvard; “People of the Book,” about the journey of the famed Sarajevo Hagaddah; and “Year of Wonders,” the story of a young woman’s fight to save her 17th century English village from the plague. Brooks is also the author of the nonfiction works “Nine Parts of Desire,” “Foreign Correspondence” and “The Idea of Home.” With her husband, the author and journalist Tony Horwitz, Brooks won the Overseas Press Club Award for best coverage of the Gulf War in 1990. As she embarked on her book tour for “The Secret Chord,” Brooks sat down with freelance journalist and Columbia Journalism School classmate Ricki Morell in Boston. Following are edited and condensed excerpts of that conversation:

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From Nieman Reports

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Walking tours, workshops, and other live events bring narrative reporting and writing from the page to the stage

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A Conversation with Pulitzer Prize Winner Diana Marcum

April 30, 2015

The Los Angeles Times reporter talks about her stories on the California drought, Steinbeck and closing her eyes to make sure she wasn't dreaming.

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