Emma Cline, Plimpton Prize and Shirley Jackson Award–winning author of The Girls, moves from historical fiction to a contemporary lens in her new volume of short stories, Daddy.

Cline’s short stories and essays have appeared in The New Yorker, The Paris Review, The New York Times, Granta, and Tin House. In this collection, Cline navigates the disappointments of growing up, experiencing success, and falling from grace.

Crisscrossing between weary men and women in the wake of scandal, from old to young and back again, Cline mines the trials of everyday life—she trails men as they rescue ignoble sons from unnamed sins at boarding school; follows women engaged in affairs marked not by passion as much as apathy; and watches two young women carry out their fantasies on themselves and one another. From the Kirkus review: “Cline’s voice is understated; her pace is slow and steady.” Cline portrays “old men [who] grew up shaped by the privilege of thinking that the world owed them something. Well-crafted depictions of people at crisis points in their lives.”

In this interview, Cline discusses the power of leaving certain events and places nameless in her stories; her favorite parts about writing from the perspectives of different genders and ages; and the dark comedy that pervades even the most heart-wrenching moments in these stories.