Finished copies of The Trip to Echo Spring have arrived! It will be published on 1 August. You can pre-order a copy here. Can't wait? There are a few signed preview copies in Heffers in Cambridge.
Recent reviews include Rebecca Solnit's The Faraway Nearby, Sarah Schulman's Gentrification of the Mind, I Remember by Joe Brainard, Here and Now by Paul Auster and J.M. Coetzee, Field Notes From A Hidden City by EstherWoolfson and Sheila Heti's How Should A Person Be.
I've also recently written essays for the Observer on Riot Grrl and for Aeon on the place of plants in our culture, medicine and art. And you can watch my Charleston discussion with Sigrid Rausing and Patrick McGrath on trauma and creativity here.
And a bit of happy news: I was awarded a Travelling Scholarship by the Society of Authors as part of their 2013 Authors' Awards.
I'll be doing various Echo-related events this spring, including Cambridge Wordfest on 13 April, the Aye Write Festival in Glasgow on 19 April, the Lewes Monday Literary Society on 29 April and the wonderful Charleston Festival on 23 May.
My new essay for Aeon on art, sex, loneliness, NYC, David Wojnarowicz and the Hudson piers is now up here. It's a sneak preview of many of the issues & themes that will crop up in the new book, The Lonely City.
Recent pieces include a column on the month's best books for Prospect, a review of Sara Maitland's Gossip from the Forest in the Observer, and an essay on ash dieback, Hurricane Sandy, M.R. James, giant spiders and ruptured children for the Junket. I also reviewed Cynthia Carr's astonishing biography of David Wojnarowicz, Fire in the Belly, for the Statesman.
To the River has been shortlisted for the Dolman Travel Book Award.
I've written about my favourite airport for the Guardian here.
I'll be reading and discussing landscape with poet Jean Sprackland at the London Review Bookshop on Thursday 28 June. Details and tickets here. On 26 May, I chaired an event at Charleston festival with Ronald Blythe and Robert Macfarlane. We talked about memory, landscape, ghosts and their beautiful new books. You can listen to it here.
To the River has been shortlisted for the 2012 RSL Ondaatje Prize, awarded for a distinguished work of literature evoking the spirit of a place.
On 30/31 May I'll be teaching a couple of all-day workshops at Charleston Festival on writing and walking, with inspiration and technical tips from Frank O'Hara and Virginia Woolf. Both of these notably original writers used walking – be it city strolls or rural tromps - as ways of stimulating their work, and we'll be looking at Woolf's diaries and O'Hara's lunch poems to see how these fertile strategies might be applied to our own creative productions. Advance booking is recommended as places are very limited.
I'm very happy to announce that I've just been awarded a Sigmund Strochlitz grant from the University of Connecticut to work on Frank O'Hara's letters. I've also recently written another short piece for Teenage, on Two of Us, a 1980s queer-positive film by the BBC.
'The Lonely City', my essay on de Chirico, Edward Hopper and aesthetics of loneliness in Manhattan is in the spring edition of The Junket.
I've just written a short piece about my years as a riot grrrl for my friend Matt Wolf's Teenage project (his film, an adaptation of Jon Savage's book, is out next year). Recent reviews include Jesmyn Ward's Salvage the Bones and a book of the year toast to Wayne Koestenbaum's magnificent Humiliation.
I'm spending autumn in New York, researching The Trip to Echo Spring. A report of my adventures is in the New Statesman. A couple of dates on my return: I'll be reading at Richmond Literature Festival on 25 November and the Festival of Ideas in Bristol on 1 December. I'll also be guest lecturing on Exeter University's Writing, Nature and Place MA on ways of approaching place-specific writing.
On 20 August, I'll be in conversation with James Runcie at the amazing Beyond Borders festival at Traquair House in Scotland, discussing landscape, memory and identity. I'll also be talking to Joan Bakewell about landscape at the Edinburgh International Book Festival on 22 August as part of her Key Ideas of the 21st Century series.
June kicks off with the Telegraph Hay Festival on 3 June and the Yellow-Lighted Festival in the Cotswolds on 4 June. Later in the month, I'll be reading at the Steyning Live Lounge in Sussex on 21 June and the CMP Festival in Brighton on 9 July. I've also written a piece for the Observer magazine about why I spent my early twenties living feral in a bender in the Sussex countryside.
I'll be interviewed by Jenni Murray on Woman's Hour on 27 April. You can listen again here.
First reading of the season is with Leo Benedictus at the i Literary Salon in the Hendrick's Horseless Carriage of Curiosities on Satuday 28 May at 1pm. That's followed by Charleston Festival on 29 May, where I'll be in conversation with Alexandra Harris, author of Romantic Moderns, and the art historian Frances Spalding.
You can read my guide to New York's best literary hotels in Condé Nast Traveller here.
To The River will be published in the Netherlands by De Bezige Bij, also the Dutch publisher of WG Sebald and Virginia Woolf.
I've just been awarded a fellowship at MacDowell, the oldest artists' colony in the United States, to work on my second book, The Trip to Echo Spring. I've also received grants from the Arts Council and the Authors' Foundation to travel around America in the spring of 2011 in the footsteps of Tennessee Williams and Raymond Carver. I'm thrilled by both these opportunities, and extremely grateful for the generosity and support of MacDowell, the Arts Council and the Authors' Foundation.
I've started writing for the New Statesman; reviews include the latest novels by Benjamin Markovits and Nicholas Shakespeare. I've also been recommending spooky summer reads for the Observer, as well as reviewing the brilliant Nicola Barker. And there's a whole slew of other stuff - Nancy Mitford and Michael Chabon among them - here.
Recent reviews include Meg Rosoff, Tobias Wolff, Jane Gardam, William Burroughs and Janice Galloway, not to mention a bizarre history of literary hoaxes. I've also profiled Stephanie Meyer, the squeaky-clean vampire queen, for the Observer, as well as previewing hot books to look out for in 2010.
Buy your signed Funny Weather here
Funny Weather launch/in conversation with the Center for Fiction
Front Row Late with Mary Beard on art in a pandemic
Crudo has won the 100th James Tait Black Memorial Prize. According to Fiction Judge Dr Alex Lawrie, of the University of Edinburgh: “This is fiction at its finest: a bold and reactive political novel that captures a raw slice of contemporary history with pace, charm, and wit.”
I wrote the catalogue essay for Chantal Joffe's new show of self-portraits, The Front of My Face. And I have a text piece in Palimpsest, a show curated by Charlie Porter at Lismore Castle Arts, open until 13 October 2019.
29 September: I'll be doing an absolutely one-off performance of a brand-new commission, a dialogue with Virginia Woolf's Orlando, written to celebrate its 90th birthday, at Charleston's Small Wonder festival. From 8-23 September you can also see A Million Candles, an Orlando-inspired installation made with artist Sarah Wood.
Crudo is a Sunday Times top ten bestseller and has been shortlisted for the Gordon Burn prize. And Suzanne Moore described it as 'a hot, hot book.' Buy it at Waterstones, Foyles, LRB, Amazon or download the audiobook here.
Hot news: David Wojnarowicz's extraordinary and deeply timely memoir Close to the Knives is being republished in the UK on 2 March, with a new introduction by me. I'll be talking about his life and work:
Amazing reviews are pouring in for The Lonely City. It's published on 3 March and I'll be doing a UK and US tour. You can read a gigantic extract in the Observer and an interview with the wonderful Charlie Porter here.
Other recent pieces include a review of I Love Dick by Chris Kraus, a profile of Truman Capote, a love letter to the British Library and an essay on the difficult business of separating art from life .
In May, I'm collaborating with writer Helen Macdonald and artist Sarah Wood on A Murmuration, an exhibition about bird watching and surveillance at Brighton Festival. You can hear me discussing it on Start the Week.
I'll be giving a lecture on my forthcoming book, The Lonely City, at the British Library on 26 January. Tickets here. I'll be talking about the book and the research process, and giving a few sneak previews of the contents too.
My long profile of the amazing Hilary Mantel is in the November issue of US Elle. Read it here. I also reviewed In the Light of What We Know by Zia Haider Rahman and chose my ten favourite books for These Lists.
I'm writer in residence at Manchester Literature Festival, and will be reading a specially commissioned piece at (and about) the wonderful Midland Hotel over afternoon tea on 9 October at 3pm. Read it here.
I'll be in conversation with Gaby Wood about David Wojnarowicz for the launch of Granta 126, 'Do you remember': 4 Feb at the Horse Hospital. Other spring dates: Bath Literature Festival on 6 March, Manchester Writing School on 20 March.
I've been in New York, Chicago and Pittsburgh for the last two months, on a research trip for The Lonely City. I explored some incredible archives, including Andy Warhol's Time Capsules at the Warhol Museum and Henry Darger's journals and art materials at the American Folk Art Museum. An essay on my work in the David Wojnarowicz archive at Fales Library is forthcoming in the next issue of Granta.
I'll be talking about Virginia Woolf's Orlando and what it has to do with gender outlaws Marsha P. Johnson, Sylvia Rivera, Kate Bornstein & Chelsea Manning at 5X15 's Exceptional Women event on 28 November at the St Pancras Hotel.
Recent radio includes Radio 4, BBC World Service, Australia's ABC, Ireland's RTE and Newstalk and Talk Radio Europe. Two of my favourites were Radio 4's Open Book, discussing writers and alcohol with Mariella Frostrup and NTS, discussing the genesis of Echo Spring with the wonderful Carrie Plitt.
Picture credit: Sophie Davidson