Jul 30, 2021
Levi Peterson is one of Mormondom's most
celebrated authors and writing teachers who, in this episode chats
with LDF host Dan Wotherspoon shortly after the
release of his latest collection of short stories, Losing a Bit
of Eden. His most famous novel is The Backslider, and
he has written, among many other things, a celebrated biography of
LDS historian Juanita Brooks (who was the first to document in a
scholarly way the events of the Mountain Meadow Massacre) and a
wonderful autobiography, A Rascal By Nature; A Christian by
In their conversation, Levi shares a bit about his writing process and the ideas that launched several of his works, his upbringing as a faithful Mormon for whom the church and certain teachings never quite fit but how and why he continued to regularly attend church and gather with fellow Latter-day Saints. He shares about his encounters with Juanita Brooks and how he became fascinated by her and knew that she deserved a thoughtful and scholarly biography, as well as about longtime friendships with Mormon writers and scholars and their impact on his life, especially Lavina Fielding Anderson and Eugene England. Finally, he speaks about the arc of Mormonism and Mormon culture during his lifetime and reflects on certain LDS leaders.
This is a fun, wide-ranging conversation that you will enjoy immensely as you come to get a feel for Levi, now 87 years old, and his personality and charisma. He and his works truly deserve celebration and continued reading.