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This Week’s Readings


MONDAY:  Editor Sari Button and contributors Elissa Bassist, Betty MacDonald and Mira Ptacin will discuss the aptly named Get Out of my Crotch, an anthology of essays that examines the continuing war on women’s reproductive rights. [BLUESTOCKINGS]

TUESDAY: In the reading series Double Take IV, three pairs of authors write original pieces about shared experiences. This time around, the pairs will be: Rick Moody & Tim Davis, John Yau & Eugene Lim, and Charles Bernstein & Elizabeth Willis. [APEXART]

WEDNESDAY: Liars’ League, a live literary journal, features fresh writing performed by actors. This month, the “secrets and lies” theme will feature stories by Maureen Duffy, Marie Sabatino, Ben Black, Tom Hopkins and Katherine Jamieson. [KGB]

THURSDAY: Congrats to The Believer on its 10th anniversary! This party, hosted by Heidi Julavits, will feature Nick Hornby, Sheila Heti, Gabrielle Bell, Amanda Filipacchi, and music by Dawn of Midi. $10/12. [LE POISSON ROUGE]

FRIDAY: Former VP Al Gore will discuss his newest book The Future: Six Drivers of Global Change. $35/45/50 (with signed book). [POWERHOUSE ARENA]

BookStalked: Mira Ptacin

This week’s BookStalked comes with a very bittersweet announcement.

Mira Ptacin is without a doubt one of the coolest people I’ve met in the literary scene in NYC—she’s SO warm and friendly and funny and smart. She’s also an insanely talented writer (I told everyone I know to read this recent essay of hers in Guernica, which is an excerpt from her upcoming memoir) AND she founded the popular reading series Freerange Nonfiction.

It was therefore a surprise to hear that Mira and Freerange will be moving to Portland, Maine next month! This news includes some great opportunities: Freerange will be teaming up with the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies, spreading even more nonfiction love, and Mira will be better able to focus on her writing. Though New York’s not an easy city to leave, Mira is able to go with the joy of time/experience well-spent:

I feel like I accomplished what I wanted to: harnessed my writing chops, made a mark in the literary community, and helped start something I’m proud of; I have a dream agent and my memoir is currently with editors…so I’m very happy to go on to the next phase of my life! I also picked up a husband and two dogs along the way, got my MFA, ghostwrote a bestseller, got bangs, and made some of the most delicious and cherished friendships I could have asked for.

After the jump, Mira reflects back on her NYC reading experiences, which include Susan Orlean getting sassy, bitter jazz musicians, Seth Fried wearing a dog suit for a good cause, a death threat (yikes!), an amazingly complete readings listings, and the one event the clinched her decision to change zip codes.

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This Week’s Readings

Well, that weekend flew by. I wanted to give a quick shout out to LUMINA, Sarah Lawrence’s graduate literary magazine. On Sunday night I went to their (first Brooklyn!) reading at Milk and Roses, which featured Mira Ptacin, Justin Taylor, Seth Fried, Joey De Jesus, and Heather Aimee O’Neill. The readings were all powerful in their own way, and it was a wonderful time.

Oh, and if you haven’t read Mira’s Guernica piece yet, please do so immediately.

I also wanted to mention Maud Newton’s recent interview on Brad Listi’s Other People podcast. I met Maud last week, which was totally thrilling, as she’s one of the most long-standing and influential literary bloggers of all time. (She was also super cool and friendly in person.) Anyhow, the interview is so fascinating that I found myself jotting down a few notes. Be sure to download!

On to readings for this week, which include nights with McSweeney’s and The Literarian, release parties for Heidi Julavits and Lüc Carl, and a reading by the Hasidic-no-more Deborah Feldman.  

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The Moment

Ask a group that includes writers, photographers, artists and zoologists (!) about a moment in their lives that changed everything, and you’re sure to get quite a range of hilarious, haunting, and/or heartbreaking answers back.

On Monday night, The Moment’s editor Larry Smith (he’s also editor of Smith Magazine and Six-Word Memoirs) hosted a night of readings at McNally Jackson. There were quite a few, but they were all so touching and poignant that I wanted to record a bit about each. And instead of “ruining” the moments, I thought I’d offer teasers instead...

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