another header

Posts Tagged ‘events’


Tuesday, March 13th, 2012

Youthful readers! I am proud to announce that today I finally broke into the Istanbul high-school circuit, with a reading/ workshop at the British International School—many thanks to Russell Gunnell and loyal super-reader Ebru Kesen for making it happen!

Here is what I learned about the British International students of Istanbul: they are really astute judges of human character. In the Q/A, right between “What’s harder, fiction or nonfiction?” and “Do you ever have writer’s block?”, one young person proved that she had me all figured out by asking, “Do you have a cat?” When I asked how she was able to tell, she tactfully replied: “I know that cats sometimes help people write books.”



Wednesday, February 22nd, 2012

Adventurous readers! Those of you who are in Istanbul this Saturday (Feb 25) are warmly encouraged to attend the first-ever Koç University International Artist-in-Residence Workshop, where I will be appearing in my capacity as a living specimen of the writer-in-residence. Come gape at me between 16:20 and 16:50 in the ANAMED library (Istiklal 181, Taksim), right before “Example of an Artist Residency Program from Göteborg, Sweden.”

I am also super-proud to share with you today my international photography debut, in the forthcoming Czech translation of Dimiter Kenarov’s Apocryphal Animals (a bestseller in its native Bulgarian). I am planning to borrow “Apocryphal Animal” as the title for my talk about being a writer-in-residence.

apocryphal czech

Click on the image to enlarge and admire both my masterful photography, as well as the elusive image of a blue deer shedding tears of blood!


Thursday, January 19th, 2012

World-weary readers! Once again I find myself, really briefly, in the city of broken dreams and shattered promises. If you are in the hood, please swing by the Center for Fiction tomorrow (Fri) evening, where I will be participating, with Rivka Galchen and Mark Athitakis, in a panel titled Criticism Beside Itself.

Speaking of criticism, my former grad school classmate, Enrique Lima, has just started a pop music blog which I warmly recommend to all my world-weary readers. I will quote only the opening line from the brilliant post on the use of sampling by Flo Rida, Jay Z, and Kanye West: “Jameson is right: we live in an age that has forgotten how to think historically.”

image image



Saturday, October 8th, 2011

Connected readers!  I’m just back from an idyllic week in Urfa, sacred carp capital of all four hemispheres.

Because the state of internet was not as well-developed as the local cyprinid species, I was unable to post a couple of videos I’d been meaning to share, from a dramatic reading of Lightning Rods (the new novel by Helen Dewitt).  The reading, which was sponsored by n+1 and the Center for Fiction, took place on September 10. By chance I was in town then visiting my mother – just imagine how honored my mom and I were, when I was asked to participate!

I was especially honored once I received the script, and saw that I got all the best lines:

His first fantasy was about walls. The woman would have the upper part of her body on one side of the wall. The lower part of her body would be on the other side of the wall. Sometimes, in fact most of the time, the upper part of the body would be fully clothed. There would be nothing to show what was going on on the other side of the wall.

Sometimes the woman would be naked from the waist down. Most of the time she would be wearing a short tight skirt that could be pushed up and underpants that could be pulled down. Sometimes he would have trouble deciding whether it was better with or without the pants. The high point was pushing the skirt slowly up to reveal a firm, tight, unsuspecting ass. Later a cock would go in and the vantage point of the fantasy would shift to the other side of the wall, where you would not know from the fully clothed upper body of the woman that a cock was hard at work on the other side of the wall. For some reason or other she would need to pretend that nothing was happening.

My mom suggested I should demand a small surcharge every time I said “cock.”  She is always looking out for her little girl.



Friday, September 16th, 2011

Because of my great love of monuments, I was really touched to read about the Isaac Babel monument unveiled last week in Odessa.  It represents Babel seated on some steps, a moderate distance away from a large enigmatic wheel.

Новый Регион: В Одессе открыли памятник Бабелю

According to sculptor Georgii Frangulyan, the steps represent Babel’s front stoop, and also the famous Potemkin stairs.

The wheel represents the tachanka wheels in Red Cavalry, the wheels of Mendel Krik’s horse cart in the Odessa Stories, the wheel of fate, the Red Wheel, and the wheel of history that ran off the track and crushed the writer.