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Nina Revoyr

Nina Revoyr is the author of four novels, including Southland (Akashic, 2003), which was a BookSense 76 pick and a Los Angeles Times Best Book of the Year, and The Age of Dreaming (Akashic, 2008), which was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize. Her most recent novel, Wingshooters (Akashic, 2011), won an Indie Booksellers Choice Award, was named one of O: Oprah Magazine’s “Books to Watch For,” and was one of Booklist’s 2011 Books of the Year. She has taught at Cornell University, Antioch University, Occidental College, and Pitzer College, and is an executive vice president of a nonprofit children’s service organization in Los Angeles.


Sessue Hayakawa, circa 1929. (Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

Silent Dreams

Winter 2013 | Essays

Minter was pushed into theater by her mother, Charlotte Shelby, who could have been the model for the stereotype of the pushy stage parent. Shelby controlled her daughter’s career—lying about her daughter’s birth date to skirt age restrictions for actors; moving Minter, her sister, and grandmother from Louisiana first to New York and then to Hollywood; pushing her into one project after another and then collecting all the paychecks.