"Work, as you will see, is imagined broadly in these stories - as labor, as chores, as business, as duty, as habit, as memory, as art, and as priestly avocation," writes Richard Ford in his introduction to this wonderful anthology of stories about work, proceeds of which go to 826Michigan, a youth writing, tutoring and publishing program in Michigan.

Few states are more associated with labor than Michigan, but like this anthology, work is more than the auto plant. So many of my favorite writers are collected here that it's impossible to know where to start. You'll find Eudora Welty, John Cheever and Richard Yates, along with great contemporary writers like Junot Diaz, Stuart Dybek and Jeffrey Eugenides. Pulitzer Prize winner Ford has included one of his own stories here, "Under the Radar," and he will be able to talk about that story and the sensibility he brought to this collection at the Printers Row Lit Fest, June 4-5. For details: chicagotribune.com/printersrowlitfest. As a bonus, the talented Jim Shepard, a contributor to the anthology, also will be at the Fest.

"Blue Collar, White Collar, No Collar:
Stories of Work"
Edited by Richard Ford
Harper Perennial, 607 pages (paperback), $15.99